February 14, 2008

Chicken Cacciatore (aka: Hunter's Stew)

I have always loved Chicken Cacciatore, even before I got into cooking things from scratch. I used to buy the jars of cacciatore sauce and throw in some cut up vegetables and cook the chicken in it and just serve with pasta. Now, I like to make things from scratch whenever possible. Now that I have been using my Pressure Cooker for awhile I am really searching for recipes that I have always loved that can be converted to the incredibly fast cooking method. I returned to my Pressure Cooking for Everyone cookbook and found this recipe that I made for tonight.

A little tidbit for you:
According to Wikipedia, cacciatore means “hunter” in Italian. When used in cooking terms, it means a meal prepared “hunter style” that typically includes onions, tomatoes, mushrooms, herbs and sometimes wine. The dish is often braised.

Obviously, the traditional preparation of braising this dish can take significantly longer than would allow for a weeknight dinner. If you prep your vegetables earlier in the week as many of the quick fix meals chefs/cooks will suggest (such as Robin Miller and Rachael Ray) then it will be a breeze to prepare. I don’t always remember to do that and often don’t decide which meal is being made until I get home each day. I always have a plan of 5-6 meals for the week, but never know which one will be made on a given day and some get skipped and saved for the next week.

Now, back to the preparation using the Pressure Cooker. The prep did take a bit of time due to the chopping of the vegetables. Once everything was ready to go into the cooker, it went very quickly. The chicken was fully cooked in only 10 minutes. Gotta love that on a weeknight! The boys enjoyed eating the chicken legs and my Husband liked the dish overall. I think we'd prefer that the sauce be thicker, so maybe next time I'll remove the cooked chicken and add a bit of flour or cornstarch to thicken it up a bit before serving. We'll be making this again. Chalk one more up to the joys of Pressure Cooking!



Kristen said...

Oh yum! I've never made this, but you can bet I'll give it a try now. Looks good and hearty!

Patsyk said...

It really is a nice hearty meal. And, you can even vary the veggies you put in based on what you have on hand or what looks good when you go food shopping. Let me know if you try it.

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