Fresh rosemary, spicy pancetta, rich olives and tart capers turn a simple stew into a popular weeknight meal. Use a mixture of red and yellow peppers for color, and spoon the stew over bulgur wheat or rice to complete the meal.
Braised Chicken with Peppers, Olives & Capers
1 chicken (about 3 1/2 lb./1.75 kg.), cut into 10 pieces
Coarse kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 Tbs. olive oil
2 Tbs. minced fresh rosemary
2 large red or yellow bell peppers, sliced
1 large onion, halved and then sliced
1 1/2 oz. (45 g.) pancetta, chopped
1/2 tsp. red pepper flakes
1 can (14 1/2 oz./455 g.) diced tomatoes
1 cup (8 fl. oz./250 ml.) dry white wine
1/3 cup (2 oz./60 g.) pitted kalamata olives
2 Tbs. capers, rinsed
Pat dry the chicken. Sprinkle on both sides with salt and black pepper. In a heavy large pot over medium-high heat, warm the oil. Add the rosemary, then the chicken pieces, in batches if necessary. Cook until brown, about 5 minutes on each side. Transfer to a plate.
Add the bell peppers, onion, pancetta and pepper flakes to the pot. Sprinkle with salt and black pepper and saute until they begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Add the tomatoes with their juice, wine, olives and capers. Bring to a boil. Return the chicken to the pot. Reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer until the dark meat is tender and the sauce has thickened slightly, about 15 minutes longer. Return the breasts to the sauce and simmer to eat through.
Divide the chicken and sauce among 4 warmed plates and serve right away.
Leftovers: For a new meal tomorrow, cut the leftover chicken meat into bite-size pieces, return it to the sauce, reheat gently and mix it into hot, cooked pasta.