Chunky Chicken Cacciatore with Fresh Tomatoes

Chunks of chicken, nestled in the best cacciatore sauce ever. In one bite, you get golden brown chicken, sweet and fresh tomatoes, bell peppers, onion, garlic, oregano, thyme, wine, capers, and fresh herbs. It's an explosion on the palate, with everyday ingredients.

My cacciatore differs from traditional, mainstream recipes, and that's what changes the game entirely (for the better). First, I called this dish "chunky" for a reason. Classic chicken cacciatore is made with whole chicken breasts and/or chicken thighs (bone-in and boneless). That's fine, but I wanted to serve my dish over some sort of carbohydrate; something to "catch" the sauce. This time, I chose pearled couscous. I've also served this amazing meal over rice.
I took a little culinary license with the tomatoes too. Traditional cacciatore is made with canned tomatoes, not fresh. Again, I have no qualms with that, BUT I like a tomato sauce that's been kicked up with vibrant, fresh tomatoes. That way, you get equal parts sweet and fresh in one bite. Trust me on that one.

Serving suggestion: As I mentioned above, I served my chicken and sauce over fluffy pearled couscous. You can also serve the dish over regular couscous, rice or pasta. Or serve it as is, with a nice artisan bread on the side!

Chunky Chicken Cacciatore with Fresh Tomatoes

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite-size pieces
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 red or orange bell pepper, seeded and chopped
1/2 cup minced onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 cup dry red wine of choice
2 cups tomato sauce, from a carton or can
1/2 cup chicken broth
2 tablespoons drained capers
1 cup diced fresh tomatoes
Chopped fresh parsley for serving

Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the chicken and cook until browned on all sides, stirring frequently. Season the chicken with salt and pepper. Transfer the chicken to a plate and set aside. Add the bell pepper, onion and garlic to the same skillet over medium heat. Cook for 3 to 5 minutes, until the vegetables are tender. Add the oregano and thyme and stir to coat. Season the vegetables with salt and pepper. Add the wine and cook until the liquid is reduced by about half, stirring and scraping up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Add the tomato sauce, broth and capers and bring to a simmer. Return the chicken to the pan with any accumulated juices from the plate. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 5 minutes. Top the chicken with the fresh tomatoes and parsley and serve.
Serves 4