Sunday, February 04, 2007

How Do I Love Thee?...Try Four

February fourth is Super Bowl Sunday, but that's not all.

Sweetie and I went to town and bought some more redwood for the deck and then put all of the photographs into the frames after cleaning the glass and writing on the mat with the photo title and my signature and the date. We did get to watch the game while doing the framing.

I love to make Sweetie a warm, satisfying meal when he has worked so hard. Yesterday he'd been building the stairs from the front walk to the first part of our entry deck, including the tricky joinery for the railing which is at an angle and today he helped me, too. So, what to cook?

The show of photographs is going to be installed at a local cafe' on Monday morning, so, besides the framing, I've been in Photoshop land, which meant that I needed the meal to be (1) simple, too.

To add to the merriment, it also had to be something with few enough ingredients that I (2) wouldn't need to go to the store again, plus I wanted to phone my Mom (which I love, love doing) before dinner, so I needed (3) something that could sit in the oven a while and not overcook if our conversation took a bit longer than expected. That's a lot to expect from any recipe. It also had to (4) be no more than four main ingredients to go with today's date. Wheew.

The perfect choice turned out to be a recipe from 1982 that I've used many times over the years. It was part of a Women's Day magazine article on things to cook with only four main ingredients.

When I was working full time, taking care of 2 kids, and volunteering, being the driver to kid events, etc. I even made this when I first got up and put it, partly cooked, in the fridge before going to work. It goes together that easily. The baking in the oven happened once I got home & while it cooked I was able to get the kids started on homework or baths and so on. Great recipe for busy lives.

This version of Chicken Cacciatore uses only four main ingredients: chicken, onion, canned tomatoes (or use fresh if you have the time) and parsley. It goes well with rice, polenta, and mashed potatoes (my choice today). If you thicken the sauce, it works well with pasta, too.

It really does sit up to an hour in the oven without drying out if your skillet has a good cover. Or seal it with some aluminum foil while it sits.

Chicken Cacciatore
From Women’s Day 12-14-82

1 chicken, cut up (I used 8 chicken thighs)
1 large onion, sliced thin
1 16 oz. can tomatoes, cut up
3 tablespoons parsley, chopped

salt & pepper to taste & olive oil for the bottom of the pan

Sprinkle chicken with salt. In a large, heavy ovenproof skillet, over medium heat, brown chicken in hot oil. (I use just enough oil to coat the pan bottom to keep the chicken from sticking. If you have a large, heavy ovenproof non-stick skillet, you don’t even need the oil.)
Add the onion; cook about 3 minutes, stirring, until the onion is crispy-tender.
Remove pan from the heat. Stir in the tomatoes and pepper. Sprinkle with the parsley.
Bake in a pre-heated 350 degree F. oven for about 40 minutes, or until tender.
Serve, or stand in turned off oven up to 1 hour.
Serves 4-6.


  1. looks delish. my boyfriend would love me for years if i made him this!

  2. Yeah Linda, the guys love it. Very hearty!