Thursday, January 1, 2009

Chicken Cacciatore Soup

This recipe would have presented much better in a low bowl but we don't have any of those. Yet. :)

I have never made Chicken Cacciatore before but wow, this was good. We served it with Parmesan Polenta & toasted bread. I found the recipe in one of my Cuisine at Home magazines a long time ago but just never made it. I have a habit of marking recipes that I'd like to make and then on a random day going through and finding one that I marked months ago. This recipe came from an April 2004 magazine!

Anyway, it's definitely a keeper - let me know if you give it a try!

2 oz pancetta or bacon, diced (I used bacon)
1 pound skinless chicken breasts, seasoned & sliced
1 cup yellow onion, diced
8 oz button mushrooms, quartered
2 Tablespoons fresh basil
2 teaspoons garlic, minced
1 teaspoons red pepper flakes
1/2 cup dry red wine
1 Tablespoon balsamic vinegar
3 cups chicken broth
1 can (14.5 oz) diced tomatoes
1/2 cup roasted red peppers, drained, diced
1/2 cup kalamata olives, coarsely chopped
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil

For the polenta:
2 cups chicken broth
1/2 cup instant polenta
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
salt to taste

Saute pancetta (in 3T oil) or bacon (omit oil) in a stock pt over medium heat until crisp.

Add chicken and saute 8-10 minutes to brown and cook through. Transfer to a plate.

Saute onion and mushroom for 5 minutes or until onion becomes translucent. Stir in basil, garlic, and pepper flakes. Cook 1 minute.

Deglaze with wine and vinegar. Cook until liquid has evaporated.

Stir in broth, tomatoes and peppers. Simmer, partially covered for 15 minutes.
Add reserved chicken & simmer 5 minutes to heat through.

Combine olives & basil for the garnish while soup simmers.

While soup is heating through bring chicken broth for the polenta to a boil. Slowly whisk in polenta. Reduce heat and continue whisking for 5 minutes. Stir in Parmesan cheese and salt. Remove from heat.

Serve cacciatore over polenta and top with olive-basil garnish.

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