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Sultry Oven-Roasted Cacciatore with Bacon

Posted on February 20, 2010 by crankycheryl

[Update 3/3/10 – this was featured in some extremely delicious company on Photograzing.  Cool!]

I love Lynne Rosetto Kasper, and was happy for her emailed recipe for an oven-roasted chicken cacciatore this week.

But when it was finally time to make it, and I started grabbing things from the freezer and fridge, there were all sorts of things  to use up,.  So dinner evolved into a roasted hybrid of Chicken Cacciatore and Puttanesca ingredients.  Based on dishes named for hunters and prostitutes, I restrained myself from coming up with a much racier name.  Still, this is  a pretty shamelessly seductive dish.

In the foreground, that’s slab bacon (from the wonderful Boucher Family Farm, by the way).  Look at that glisten!  More Vermont goodness made this whole dish shine: Misty Knoll chickenIntervale tomatoes and potatoes, that outrageous bacon.  It’s so nice that mid-winter local doesn’t have to mean root vegetables at every meal.

Sultry Oven-Roasted Chicken Cacciatore with Bacon & Polenta
Serves 4-6

Preheat oven to 400.

Lightly oil 2 rimmed baking sheets.

Place on the sheets:

  • 8 chicken thighs, skin side up
  • 6 large tomatoes (fresh or frozen), cut into quarters
  • 1/4 lb. slab bacon, cut into large chunks
  • 1/2 lb. crimini or baby bella mushrooms, cleaned and cut in half
  • 1/2 c. oil-cured olives, pitted
  • If you have them around, you could toss in some quartered potatoes, large-dice green peppers, or unpeeled garlic cloves.
  • Salt on the chicken (the fat & juices from the bacon will salt everything else)

Roast for 30 – 35 minutes (start the polenta after you get the chicken going), rotating the trays after 15 minutes unless you can fit them on the same rack.  The chicken is done when its skin is crisp and golden and its juices run clear.  Use a slotted spoon to scoop the chicken and vegetables into a bowl.  Toss in:

  • 2 T. capers, drained

Polenta

Bring to a boil:

  • 3 c. water
  • 1/2 t. salt
  • 1 t. olive oil

Mix together until free of lumps:

  • 1 c. water
  • 1 c. cornmeal

When water in pan is at a full boil, pour in the water-corn mixture slowly, stirring constantly and thoroughly.  But watch this – now you don’t have to stir it constantly!  Turn the heat down to very low, give a few firm stirs and let cook gently with no lid for 25 minutes or until done (it will be very thick and will not taste granular or at all raw if you give it a try).

Top with the chicken mixture and serve.

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  • This looks amazing! I am adding this to my “things to make soon” list! I’m really trying to get into eating local as much as I can.

  • Wow does that look delish! Polenta and bacon together…mmmm.

  • Thanks for the visits Kathy and Candace!


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    Cheryl Herrick's brave Vermont quest to bring together food-love and mom-life. All original content (written, graphical, recipes or other), unless otherwise noted, is © and/or TM Cheryl Herrick. All rights reserved by the author. Want to reprint a recipe? Just get in touch and ask.

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