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  • Writer's picturehungryhungryhayden

Cacciatore

Updated: Aug 1, 2020



Cacciatore means "hunter" in Italian and is a tomato based stew containing any meat a hunter could acquire (the picture above is chicken cacciatore, but feel free to use anything such as venison, rabbit, turkey, other fowl, beef, lamb, pork, or any other terrestial bird or mammal you can get your hands on). Peppers, onions, and garlic are often the aromatics bringing the flavor. We're going to elevate this timeless classic by building flavor in the pot before braising the meat until tender.


Ingredients:

Chicken, or really any other terrestrial animal meat cut into 1 serving portions

Onion, sliced

Bell pepper, sliced or jarred roasted red peppers

1tbsp tomato paste

1 large can whole peeled tomatoes

Enough olive oil to cover the bottom of your pot

A touch of vegetable oil to preserve the olive oil

Cracked black pepper or crushed red chili to taste

garlic,measure with your heart. Don't be shy here, it'll mellow out during braising.

Chicken/ vegetable stock and/or water

A Splash dry white or red wine to deglaze with (vermouth works too)

oregano

parsley (Can sub Italian seasoning for the herbs)

optional: mushrooms or any other hearty vegetable you have lying around


Technique:

1. Turn broiler on and broil bell peppers. Once charred all around, remove the skin, slice, and reserve. (Could skip this step but substituting roasted red and green peppers)

2.Lube pan with olive oil and vegetable oil and sear seasoned meat until well browned on both sides

3. Remove browned chicken and add onions, tomatoes, and any other vegetable you're using . Saute until they begin to take color

4. Add black and red pepper, herbs, tomato paste and garlic. And saute until everything is caramelized and the tomato paste takes on a brick red color.

5. Deglaze with wine

6. Mash up whole peeled tomatoes and add them and their liquid to the pan. Return meat to pan. Keep one well seared side of the meat above the liquid to preserve flavor and texture. Add sliced roasted peppers, and braise until meat is fork tender.

6. Adjust stew consistency with stock or pasta water, it should at least coat the back of a spoon, but it can be thicker.

7. Serve over your choice of starch (risotto, farro, polenta,and pasta all work) and garnish with fresh herbs and Parmesan cheese


Substitutions and Additions:

1. I feel like I need to say it again: almost any terrestrial mammal or game fowl will work in this recipe.

2. Onion- shallot and leek also work, but lets be honest, if you don't have onion, you probably don't have leek or shallot.

3. Bell peppers- jarred roasted red pepper will save you a step. outside of that, any mild pepper will suffice (e.g. Shishito, Poblano, Anaheim, Cherry/Pimento, Piquillo, and Basque Fryer)

4. Canned whole peeled tomatoes- any other canned tomato product, such as sauce, crushed, and diced tomatoes will due. Alternately, fresh tomatoes fan be used. Add them diced or slice in half and grate the fleshy inside into the pot, reserving and discarding the skin. you can always adjust the consistency with water or stock.

5. Oregano and Parsley- can substitute for dried or an Italian seasoning blend

6. Wine/vermouth- wine vinegar or even water and stock will deglaze a pan just as well

7. Suggestions for additional vegetables: celery and carrot would make good aromatics, mushrooms would also be a welcome addition. parsnips or any other non-tuber root vegetable would benefit the braising, as well



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