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Chicken Puttanesca

December 29, 2009
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All the cooking I did over the past week or so pretty much cleaned out the cupboards and the pantry.  We have no fresh vegetables (except garlic and parsley), no flour, and hardly any canned food.  We don’t even have any hot pockets.  And that, folks, means that the situation is beyond dire.

After poking around the fridge and finding half of a 30 ounce can of diced tomatoes and some other odds and ends, I remembered a quick chicken dish I’d made before.  Surprisingly, we had all the stuff necessary to make it.  And it’s healthy.  Win, win.

The real name for this recipe is “Chicken Thighs with Tomatoes, Capers and Olives,” (I’ll call it CTTCO) which is a bit of a mouthful.  It turns out the recipe is similar to that of spaghetti alla puttanesca (meaning “whore’s spaghetti”), an Italian dish made from easy-to-find ingredients.  The CTTCO is missing a couple of key puttanesca ingredients, primarily onions and anchovies, but hey, it’s pretty close.

You might notice in the photo below that I served it with two different kinds of pasta.  That’s because we didn’t have enough of one kind of pasta to serve both of us (in case you’re wondering, yes, we’ve gone grocery shopping since then).  Typically puttanesca is served with spaghetti (as implied above) or some other kind of long pasta.

Chicken Puttanesca

(Adapted from Cooking Light)

Below is how I would prepare the recipe if I make it again, which includes sauteing some onion before cooking the garlic.  If you wanted to make it more like a real puttanesca sauce you could add in some anchovies or sun-dried tomatoes.  Nate commented that he wished there was more sauce, so you could add in a can and a half of diced tomatoes if you’re a sauce-person. 

  • 8  skinless, boneless chicken thighs
  • 1/2  teaspoon  salt
  • 1/4  teaspoon  black pepper
  • 1  teaspoon  vegetable oil
  • 1 cup chopped onion 
  • 1  tablespoon  bottled minced garlic
  • 1  cup  chopped fresh parsley
  • 1/4  cup  chopped pitted kalamata olives
  • 2  teaspoons  capers
  • 1  (14.5-ounce) can no-salt-added diced tomatoes, undrained

Sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper. Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken; cook 4 minutes on each side. Remove chicken from pan; keep warm.

Saute onions in pan until softened.  Add garlic to pan; sauté 30 seconds. Add remaining ingredients; scrape pan to loosen browned bits. Return chicken and accumulated juice to pan; reduce heat, and simmer 5 minutes or until chicken is done.  Stir in the capers three to four minutes before serving.

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