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A Chicken on Every Stove Top

November 4, 2014 - Radio Kitchen - A Chicken on Every Stove Top

As we wander through the aisles of our produce sections or our farmers markets this time of year, we're left to wonder what we can do with a dwindling amount of fresh produce.  Well we think the answer is to go chicken.  And Chef Jerry Pellegrino of Waterfront Kitchen discovered when his oven went on the fritz that there are a lot of stove top recipes that are perfect for this time of year.  Here are three recipes he developed:

               Chicken Provencal (adopted from Food & Wine magazine)

1 tablespoon cooking oil
1 chicken (about 3 to 3 1/2
pounds), cut into eight pieces
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon fresh-ground
black pepper
1 small onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup red wine
1 1/2 cups canned crushed
tomatoes with their juice
1/2 teaspoon fresh rosemary, chopped
1/2 teaspoon fresh thyme, chopped
1/3 cup black olives, Kalamata or Nicoise, halved
and pitted
1 teaspoon anchovy paste

1. In a Dutch oven, heat the oil over moderately high heat. Season the chicken with 1/4 teaspoon each of the salt and pepper and put it in the pan. Cook the chicken until browned, turning, about 8 minutes in all. Remove the chicken from the pan. Pour off all but 1 tablespoon fat from the pan.

2. Reduce the heat to moderately low. Add the onion and the garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion starts to soften, about 3 minutes. Add the wine to the pan and simmer until reduced to about 1/4 cup, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the tomatoes, rosemary, thyme, olives, anchovy paste, and the remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt and simmer for 5 minutes.

3. Add the chicken thighs and drumsticks and any accumulated juices. Reduce the heat to low and simmer, covered, for 10 minutes. Add the breasts and cook until the chicken is just done, about 10 minutes more. Add the remaining 1/4 teaspoon pepper.

                Chicken Cacciatore

4 chicken thighs
2 chicken breasts with skin and backbone, halved crosswise
2 teaspoons salt, plus more to taste
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more to taste
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 large red bell pepper, chopped
1 large yellow onion, chopped
6 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
3/4 cup dry white wine
1 (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes with juice
3/4 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth
3 tablespoons drained capers
1 1/2 teaspoons fresh oregano leaves, chopped
1/4 cup coarsely chopped fresh basil leaves

1. Sprinkle the chicken pieces with 1 teaspoon of each salt and pepper. In a Dutch oven, heat the oil over a medium-high flame. Add the chicken pieces to the pan and sauté just until brown, about 5 minutes per side. If all the chicken does not fit in the pan, sauté it in 2 batches. Transfer the chicken to a plate and set aside.

2. Add the bell pepper, onion and garlic to the same pan and sauté over medium heat until the onion is tender, about 5 minutes. Add the wine and simmer until reduced by half, about 3 minutes. Add the tomatoes with their juice, broth, capers and oregano. Return the chicken pieces to the pan and turn them to coat in the sauce.

3. Reduce the heat and bring the sauce to a simmer. Cover the pot and cook until the chicken is done through, about 30 minutes.

4. Transfer the chicken to a platter. If necessary, boil the sauce until it thickens slightly. Mix in the fresh basil and spoon onto the chicken.


             Chicken and Rice

3 tablespoons olive oil
4 chicken thighs
2 chicken breasts with skin and backbone, halved crosswise
salt and pepper
1 large onion, roughly chopped
1 green bell pepper, roughly chopped
6 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1 cup dry white wine
1 28-ounce can diced tomatoes, including liquid
1 cup long-grain white rice
1 cup peas, frozen will work but fresh are better
1/4 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley, roughly chopped
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/4 cup pimiento-stuffed Spanish olives, chopped (optional)

1. Heat the oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Pat the chicken dry with paper towels. Season with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper and cook until golden brown, 2 minutes per side. Remove from the pan.

2. Add the onion and bell pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the paprika, wine, tomatoes and their liquid, rice, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper and bring to a boil. Add the chicken back to the pan, reduce the heat and simmer, covered, for 20 minutes or until the rice and chicken are cooked through.

3. Remove the cooked chicken, stir the peas and fresh parsley into the rice and cook, covered, until heated through, about 2 minutes.

4. Place the hot rice on a plate and top with the chicken.

Al Spoler, well known to WYPR listeners as the wine-loving co-host of "Cellar Notes" has had a long-standing parallel interest in cooking as well. Al has said, the moment he started getting serious about Sunday night dinners was the same moment he started getting serious about wine. Over the years, he has benefited greatly from being a member of the Cork and Fork Society of Baltimore, a gentlemen's dining club that serves black tie meals cooked by the members themselves who are some of Baltimore's most accomplished amateur cooks.
Executive Chef Jerry Pellegrino of Corks restaurant is fascinated by food and wine, and the way they work in harmony on the palate. His understanding of the two goes all the way to the molecular level, drawing on his advanced education in molecular biology. His cuisine is simple and surprising, pairing unexpected ingredients together to work with Corks' extensive wine offerings.