Chicken Cacciatore

Quantities are approximate. I actually made this yesterday with 24 drumsticks, so twice as much of everything.
  • 12 chicken drumsticks (or equivalent in varied chicken pieces, bone in)
  • 1 pound mushrooms, sliced thinly
  • 1 large Spanish onion, sliced thinly
  • 12 small potatoes, scrubbed and left whole
  • 6 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 - 28 oz. can plum tomatoes
  • 1 - 14 oz. can tomato puree (or half of a 28 oz. can)
  • Salt, pepper and cayenne, to taste
  • Oil and butter for browning

Brown the chicken in your dutch oven (or any large heavy bottomed pot) a few pieces at a time until nicely golden. Set aside and dust lightly with salt, pepper and cayenne as you take the pieces out of the pot. In the same pot, sauté onions, garlic and mushrooms over medium heat until the onions are soft and golden. Set aside. Pour plum tomatoes into pot and break up with a potato masher until most of the larger pieces are gone. Add 1/3 of the can of water. Simmer for about 20 minutes then add the tomato puree, a half cup more water, salt and pepper to taste, oregano and two fresh bay leaves. Allow this all to simmer, stirring occasionally, for about half an hour.

Add back the onion mixture and the potatoes. Stir well, adjust seasoning slightly, add a bit more water if necessary (potatoes should be just covered) and continue simmering for 30 minutes. Add back your chicken pieces, reduce heat to low, cover loosely and walk away. Literally. After about 45 minutes, come back and check on it, stir it around a bit to make sure everything is evenly distributed, and leave it alone for another 30 minutes or so.

You want your potatoes to be falling apart and the chicken almost falling off the bone.

Serve with crusty bread, sit back and collect the praise.

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