In this dish, use fresh herbs if possible. Dried herbs work best in marinades or dishes with longer cooking times.
INGREDIENTS | SERVES 2 to 4
- 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- 5 tablespoons dry white wine, divided
- ½ teaspoon salt
- Freshly ground black pepper to taste
- 2 teaspoons cornstarch
- 3 tablespoons chicken broth
- 3½ tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 2 shallots, chopped
- ¼ pound thinly sliced fresh mushrooms
- 2 tablespoons tomato sauce
- 2 teaspoons chopped fresh basil leaves
- 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
Cut the chicken breasts into thin strips approximately 1½ to 2 inches long. Place the chicken in a bowl and add 2 tablespoons dry white wine, salt, black pepper, and cornstarch. Marinate the chicken for 20 minutes.
Combine the chicken broth and 3 tablespoons white wine in a bowl. Set aside.
Heat a wok or skillet on medium-high heat until it is almost smoking. Add 2 tablespoons oil. When the oil is hot, add the chicken strips. Let them brown briefly, then stir-fry, stirring and tossing the chicken for 4 to 5 minutes, until it turns white and is nearly cooked. Remove the chicken from the pan.
Heat 1½ tablespoons oil in the pan. When the oil is hot, add the shallots. Stir-fry until they begin to soften, then add the sliced mushrooms. Stir-fry for about 10 seconds, then add the chicken broth and white wine mixture.
Stir in the tomato sauce. Bring to a boil, then add the chicken back into the pan. Stir in the chopped basil and thyme. Stir-fry for 2 more minutes to blend all the ingredients and make sure the chicken is cooked. Serve hot.
Commonly called chicken cacciatore, the full name of this popular Italian dish is pollo alla cacciatore, or “hunter's chicken.” It is reputed to have been created in Italy in the seventeenth century by hunters looking for the perfect recipe to bring out the flavor of freshly caught game.