Chicken cacciatore is a classic for a reason. I use drumsticks, which are ideal for braising as the develop a beautiful sticky and gelatinous texture with long cooking. The base for this cacciatore is canned cherry tomatoes and chopped sundried tomatoes. I often use chopped sundried where you might otherwise use tomato paste as it gives a deeper, more interesting flavour to tomato braises.
2 tbsp olive oil
1 kg Lilydale free-range chicken drumsticks
2 tbsp plain flour
2 onions, peeled and thickly sliced
3 cloves garlic, lightly crushed
1 red capsicum, sliced
150 g button mushrooms, sliced
3 sundried tomatoes, finely chopped
400 g can whole cherry tomatoes
125 ml red wine
2 tbsp tomato sauce
500 ml vegetable stock, chicken stock or water
3 bay leaves
3 sprigs thyme
1 tsp salt
½ tsp sugar
½ cup kalamata olives
2 tbsp finely shredded parsley, to serve
Heat your oven to 160C (fan). Heat a wide lidded casserole over medium heat and add the oil. Toss the chicken together with the flour, and brown the chicken in batches, removing from the dish when browned. Add the onions and stir for a minute (adding a little more oil if necessary), then add the garlic, capsicum, mushrooms and sundried tomato, stirring occasionally until the onions are lightly browned. Add the cherry tomatoes, wine, stock, bay leaves, thyme, salt and sugar, scraping any browned bits from the base of the pot. Return the drumsticks to the pot. Bring to a simmer then transfer to the oven for 45 minutes covered.
Add the olives and return to the oven for a further 20 minutes uncovered. Allow to stand for 20 minutes before serving scattered with parsley.