Sep 8, 2008

Quick Chicken Cacciatore

This is a Pampered Chef recipe, but I had a request for some deliciously simple recipes and this is one of my favorites. Once you get the hang of it, you can switch it up to make it your own (I use fresh breaded chicken now). But for beginners, this is pretty easy.

Quick Chicken Cacciatore

1 package (10.5 oz) frozen breaded chicken breast (Tyson is a good brand to try or even if you have chicken nuggets strips in the freezer)
1 medium green bell pepper
4 oz mushrooms, sliced (we leave these out because Eric doesn't like mushrooms)
1 small onion, shopped (about 3/4 cup but don't stress over exactness)
8 oz (1/2 1LB package) linguine
2 cans (14 1/2 oz each) Italian-seasoned diced tomatoes, undrained
1 garlic cloves, pressed (or chopped, or you can use pre-chopped garlic you get at the grocery store)
Grated Parmesan Cheese

1. To partially thaw chicken patties, follow package microwave heating directions (safety) except microwave on HIGH 1 minutes only. Cut chicken patties into 3/4 inch strips and bell peppers into thin strips. Slice mushrooms. Chop onion.

2. Cook linguine according to package directions. Drain and keep warm.

3. Meanwhile, heat a large skillet over medium-high heat until hot. Lightly spray with olive oil. Add chicken patty strips; cook 5 minutes, turning frequently with spatula.

4. Add tomatoes, bell pepper, mushrooms, onion and garlic. Bring to a boil; cover. Reduce heat; simmer 8-10 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Serve over hot linguine. Sprinkle with Parmesan Cheese, if desired.

Yield: 4 servings

Menu Suggestion
Serve this one-dish meal with refrigerated garlic bread sticks.

How I make this recipe

Instead of bothering with breaded chicken, I cut up 1 large breast into strips. I place them in a hot pot with some olive oil (about 1-2 TBS over med-high heat) and let them get a little brown. I then add the onions, let them cook a minute, add the garlic, let it get slightly brown, and then add the rest of the ingredients (peppers, tomatoes). I will add a little bit of water (about 1/2 can that used to hold the tomatoes), and about 1/2 cup bread crumbs (seasoned bread crumbs are nice because you don't have to add any Italian Seasoning). Believe me, the bread crumb taste adds a wonderful flavor. I then let it simmer for an hour or more (I learned that because I prefer to cook it longer, my breadcrumbs fell off my chicken anyway, that is how I came up with this method). It becomes more sauce like, and less chunky, but I like it that way! I also add Italian spice blend - BUT ONLY - if I use plain bread crumbs and non-seasoned tomatoes. Stir it often to make sure nothing sticks and burns on the bottom. Enjoy over your linguine. Oh and by the way, your house will smell so delicious!

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