Then, right in the middle of my planning for what to pack and what to bring and what to make, this recipe for Roman Style Chicken arrived in my in box from Giada De Laurentiis and the nice folk at the Food Network that promised a dish that was easy to put together, and that tasted better if made ahead of time and reheated.
Exactly what I was looking for! I did change a few, small things about the recipe – using duck fat in place of olive oil because, well, it was there; and adding the capers and chopped fresh parsley to the completed dish before setting it aside to cool and packing it away for travel instead of adding them just before serving. Still and all, a very nice dinner gently reheated in a slow cooker and served over yellow rice at the end of a long day’s travels.
•2 chicken breast halves
•4 chicken thighs
•1/4 cup olive oil*
•1 red bell pepper, sliced
•2 yellow bell peppers, sliced
•3 oz prosciutto, chopped
•2 cloves garlic, chopped
•1 (15 oz) can diced tomatoes
•1/2 cup white wine
•1 tbsp Sherry Peppers Sauce**
•1 tsp dried thyme
•1/4 tsp dried oregano
•1/2 cup chicken stock
•2 tbsp capers
•1 cup chopped fresh parsley
*I used 2 tbsp fresh duck fat.
**Or, add 1 tsp of your favorite hot sauce
Season the chicken pieces with salt and pepper, then add to the hot fat or oil in the skillet and cook just until browned on all sides. Remove the chicken pieces to a platter and set aside.
Add the pepper slices and prosciutto to the hot pan and cook for five minutes or so, until the peppers are lightly browned in spots and the prosciutto is crisped.
Add the wine to deglaze the pan, scraping up any browned bits stuck to the bottom of the pan, then add the tomatoes, Sherry Peppers Sauce, thyme, and oregano.
Return the chicken pieces to the pan, stir in the stock, and bring to a boil.
If making this ahead, this is the point where Giada suggests allowing it to cool before stashing in a container in the fridge, then adding the capers and fresh parsley as you prepare to reheat it. I was unsure of the kitchen we were going to have for the week, so opted to add both at this point so I would not have to worry about non-existant cutting boards and kinda iffy knives before packing the cooled dish into a traveling container.
Once we settled in at the cabin, I popped the chicken into the slow cooker provided, placed the yellow rice mix in the rice cooker I had brought along, and took the dog for a walk in the woods while dinner was taking care of itself.
Giada and the good folk at Food Network were, of course, totally correct. The very nice flavors I’d tasted the first day I made this dish had developed and blended and become so much richer tasting when reheated – and even more so when I took the cooled leftovers and stashed ’em in the freezer to be brought out on our return home at the end of the week for another simple dinner on a travel day.
Winner winner chicken dinner, indeed.