Too much

Too much of a good thing can be wonderful! by Mae West
That's my philosophy about all things in life!

Friday, September 2, 2011

Chicken Cacciatore with Maple Balsamic Greens over Pasta

Since I'm doing a trip to Italy blog hopping party this month, lots of Italian meals are on the menu for he next few weeks. My Italian background makes me crave delicious hearty meals and wine way too often, and this is definitely one of them.
Whole pieces of chicken slow cooked in wine and stock is what this dish is, and served with a glass of Chianti makes it all better.

1 whole chicken, cut into 8 pieces
salt and pepper to season chicken
4-6 tablespoons all purpose flour
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
6 cloves of garlic, sliced
1 green pepper, sliced
1 cup white mushrooms, sliced
3 slices prosciutto, chopped ( or a small square of bacon, which should be removed at the end)
1 pint of canned tomatoes, i use home canned, but store bought is fine too(whole peeled)
1 1/2 cups of red wine
1 1/2 cups of chicken stock
1/2 cup chopped basil and parsley

4-6 cups roughly chopped mixed greens (mustard, collard, turnips)
6 slices maple smoked bacon, chopped
2 cloves of garlic, thinly chopped
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon brown sugar
salt and pepper to taste

1 lb box of your favorite pasta, cooked al dente

Season pieces of chicken with salt and pepper and dredge them in flour. 
Heat olive oil in a large heavy bottomed pan. Brown chicken pieces on both sides, you might need to work in batches. Remove chicken and set on a plate aside.
Add onions to pan where you browed the chicken, and cook them for about 3 minutes. Add garlic, and cook for another minute. Add peppers, and cook for about 5 minutes. Add mushrooms, prosciutto and set chicken pieces on top of vegetables. Add tomatoes, red wine and chicken stock. 

Bring it to a simmer and cook for about 40 minutes or until chicken is falling off the bone. Remove pieces of chicken and vegetables and transfer them to a platter. Add herbs and reduce the sauce to about half.
In a large frying pan, cook bacon pieces until crispy, add garlic and cook for 1-2 minutes, until golden. Add balsamic, apple cider vinegar and brown sugar and reduce to half. Add greens, 1 cup at a time until you can fit all in the frying pan. Season with salt and pepper and cover. Cook on low for about 25 minutes, or until greens are dark colored and very soft.
Serve greens over pasta and top it off with chicken and vegetables. Pour the sauce over the chicken and serve it hot with fresh italian bread.