Saturday, March 19, 2011

Chicken Scarpiello [Chicken With Fennel Sausages And Cherry Peppers]

extra virgin olive oil
1 pound fennel sausage, cut into bite-sized pieces
2 (3-pound) chickens, cut into 8 to 10 pieces with bone left intact
kosher salt
1 Spanish onion, cut into 1/4-inch slices
3 cloves garlic, smashed and finely chopped
3/4 cup white wine
1 cup quartered hot cherry peppers (remove seeds to remove heat)
1/2 cup hot cherry pepper juice, from the jar
1 cup chicken stock, plus a little more if needed
3 sprigs fresh oregano, picked and chopped

Preparing the chicken:
Coat a large, wide pan with olive oil and bring the pan to a medium-high heat. Add the sausage and brown well. Remove the sausage with a slotted spoon and reserve.

Season the chicken generously with salt and add to the pan that the sausage was browned in. Brown the chicken well. Once the chicken is brown on all sides, remove it from the pan and reserve.

Drain the oil from the pan and return it to the heat. Coat the pan lightly with new olive oil, add the onions, and season with salt. Cook the onions over medium heat until they are translucent and very aromatic, 6 to 7 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 2 to 3 more minutes.

Add the wine to the pan and reduce it by half. While the wine is reducing, scrape any browned bits off the bottom of the pan. Return the sausage and chicken to the pan and add the cherry peppers, cherry pepper juice, chicken stock, and oregano. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, and simmer, partially covered, for 15 minutes. Remove the lid and simmer for 5 more minutes; add more chicken stock if the stock has reduced too much.

Taste and adjust the seasoning, if needed. The finished dish should be slightly soupy, spicy, and delicious.

Serves 6


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