Chicken Cacciatore

This is a dish that would traditionally be made with a whole, cut-up chicken, but, as I cook for two, I used chicken breasts.

Chicken thighs would also be good.

Serve over rice or pasta or quinoa or barley or mashed potatoes or anything you like….

Feel free to add hot sauce…..

Chicken Cacciatore

total time: 40 minutes

 Ingredients:

  • 2 chicken breasts, boneless, skinless,  cut into 5 – 6 pieces each
  • 1 small green or yellow bell pepper, roughly chopped
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 rib celery, chopped
  • 4oz (120gr) mushrooms. trimmed and quartered
  • 1 3/4 cups (15oz, 450gr) chopped tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup (4oz, 120ml) chicken broth
  • 2 tbs tomato paste
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tbs olive oil

Chicken Cacciatore

Instructions:

  • Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. 
  • Add onion, pepper, celery, and sauté for 5 minutes. 
  • Add mushrooms and sauté for 5 minutes longer.. 
  • Move vegetables to the side and add chicken. Sauté for 8 minutes, turning once.. 
  • Add broth, tomatoes, tomato paste, paprika, Worcestershire and herbs. Stir to combine.
  • Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 10 minutes. 
  • Uncover and simmer 10 minutes longer, reducing slightly.

Print Recipe

Do you watch cooking shows?

I have to admit that I don’t really watch them so much as listen to them…. background noise.

If there were any decent programs I would watch, but we seem to only get the drivel here.

As it is, they are usually a last resort bit of entertainment while I’m fixing dinner.

Last night we were lucky enough to get ‘Restaurant Stakeout’.

Have you seen it? The premise is that a rather gruff, inarticulate man is called in to solve staff problems for a restaurant owner.

It’s not particularly entertaining and there is an amazing amount of shouting and cursing, but what really struck me were the complaints he had about the staff. He was outraged that they didn’t introduce themselves (yes, I know that’s an American thing), that they weren’t checking their tables every 5 minutes, that they didn’t ask if ‘everything was okay’ after the first taste of food and that they didn’t know how to properly handle special orders. (They had a mystery diner that asked if they could stuff an artichoke for her.)

I realize that it’s not a surprise that Americans think waiters in Paris are rude.

When one goes into a Parisian cafe, the waiter (it’s almost always a waiter) says ‘bon jour’, escorts you to a table and hands you a menu. He doesn’t come back until you have opened, and then closed the menu, signaling that you have made a choice. Then he comes to the table and looks at you expectantly, pencil and paper in hand. He may or may not say ‘oui?’.  As you order he makes certain you don’t forget anything – asking what you want to drink, verifying the order, etc. When he brings the food he says ‘Voila!’ or Bon appetit.. He doesn’t return until everyone at the table has finished, at which point the table is cleared and coffee is offered. Then he totally disappears until you manage to catch his eye and signal for the bill. You are in possession of that table for as long as you want – all day if you like. No one is asked if the food was okay (it’s assumed it was).

The difference between the two styles are night and day.  No wonder there is confusion and the occasional misunderstanding.

There is also the difference that in most of Europe a waiter is a professional; in most of the US wait staff are biding time until something better comes along.

As to the TV show – are there really restaurant owners that are so oblivious to their business that they need the help of this character?

I may quit watching TV altogether…..

3 thoughts on “Chicken Cacciatore”

  1. I think they’re always waiting for something more here because they’re so underpaid. But then, you would think since their tips are the majority of their income, that they would do a better service. We had one waitress throw our plates on the table in front of us. We knew she was having a bad night when she took our orders but we had no idea how bad until my dinner continued its forward motion and landed in my lap. Needless to say, we never went back to that restaurant. So, is it a problem here? Absolutely.

    Your chicken is a recipe I’ll definitely make! It looks easy and yummy 🙂

  2. I dislike waiters that hang over your every move and fill your water glass after you have taken the merest sip and interrupt your chewing asking questions. The Parisian version is much more my thing than the US wait service.

  3. nightmusic, if they were paid a decent wage, maybe it would be considered a decent job and it all would become more professional…. and yes, I waited tables LOL

    Kate, mine also…. I want to talk to my companions, not the staff. I like to eat in peace ;-))

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