Italian Chopped Salad
Adapted from the Food Network
This dinner was amazing! The chicken thighs were tender and fall off the bone good, and the cacciatore sauce was flavorful and delicious. Then, add the chopped salad and some polenta and you’ve got an incredible meal to serve family and/or friends. The meal would wow anyone! Also, the cacciatore actually gets better over time, so it’s a perfect meal to make the day before, then simply reheat it and serve!
6 -8 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs, skin removed
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup flour
2 TBSP extra virgin olive oil
1 small onion, finely chopped
1/2 lb sliced cremini mushrooms
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 tsp finely chopped fresh oregano
1 tsp finely chopped fresh rosemary
One 28-oz can whole tomatoes, cut up with kitchen shears
3/4 cup halved black olives (I used kalamata)
2 TBSP drained capers
1-2 tsp salt
1/4 cup torn fresh basil leaves
Sprinkle the chicken thighs with salt and pepper, then toss them in a bowl with the flour to lightly coat.
Heat the olive oil in a large, wide pot over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add the thighs and cook, turning once, until golden brown on both sides, about 3 minutes per side. You may have to do this step in batches, depending on the size of your pot.
Remove the thighs to a plate.
Add the onion and mushrooms to the pot and cook, stirring, until the onion is softened and the mushrooms are lightly golden, about 5 minutes.
Add the garlic and bell peppers and cook, stirring, until the peppers are just starting to soften, about 1 minute.
Add the wine and bring to a boil, then cook, scraping up any brown bits, until reduced by about half. Add the oregano and rosemary. Add the tomatoes and their juice and bring to a simmer.
Add the olives, capers and salt (to taste). Return the chicken to the pot, nestling in the sauce. Reduce the heat to keep the sauce at a gentle simmer, and cook until the chicken is cooked through, about 25 minutes.
Sprinkle with the basil. Serve immediately.
Italian Chopped Salad
2 TBSP red wine vinegar
1 tsp Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp Calabrian chile paste, crushed red pepper flakes
1/2 tsp dried Italian seasoning
1/2 small shallot, minced
3 TBSP extra virgin olive oil
4 radishes, thinly sliced
2 celery ribs, thinly sliced
2 romaine hearts, cut into 1/2-inch-wide strips
1/4 lb provolone, cut into 1/4-inch cubes
1/4 lb Genoa salami, cut into 1/4-inch cubes
1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
3 TBSP pickled pepperoncini, sliced
3 TBSP pickled cherry peppers, sliced
For the vinaigrette: Whisk the vinegar, mustard, chile paste, Italian seasoning, shallot and 1/4 teaspoon salt together in a small bowl.
Gradually whisk in the olive oil.
Pour into a cruet and shake or whisk in a bowl.
For the salad: Combine the radishes, celery, provolone, salami, tomatoes, pepperoncini and cherry peppers in a large salad bowl.
Add Romaine. Toss with the vinaigrette and serve immediately.