Chicken Cacciatore (My way, with Beer)

I can’t tell you how delicious this dish is, you have to make it yourself to find out ;). I love chicken cacciatore*, I love any tomato-based dish especially if it’s slow-cooked like this one. This dish is an Italian classic, and traditionally made by adding wine but I didn’t have any wine when I did this (about 10 days ago) so I substituted beer instead and seasoned it with fish sauce (patis). I have tried cacciatore with red wine couple of times before,  I don’t  see taste  significant difference here. I used chicken legs (my fave chicken part) and simmered it on low heat for an hour. This dish is great with pasta but we prefer rice with it; it’s so filling, we are big eaters and this cacciatore made us eat more rice because it’s so full of really yummy flavors. We all love it. I am getting hungry as I’m doing this post, blogging about it makes me crave for it, see how I keep on repeating myself, that means I’m hungry already.  Here are some pictures and the recipe:


..browning/searing the flour-coated chicken legs


putting the seared chicken legs back in the pan with the sauce, ready to soak in all the flavors


After about an hour… tah-dah!  Yummy home- cooked meal! Are you getting hungry yet?

Now, it’s your turn to make it your family will love you more :), here’s the recipe:

my version, with beer
serves 4

*Cacciatore means “hunter” in Italian. In cuisine, cacciatore refers to a meal prepared “hunter-style” with tomatoes, onions, mushrooms, herbs, often bell pepper, and sometimes wine. Cacciatore is popularly made with braised chicken or rabbit.(sourced from

6 pieces chicken legs (I think that’s about 550-600g), or thighs or any bone-in chicken pieces
1/2 cup flour
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
8 oz / 1/4 k ripe tomatoes (look for deep red color), diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 big red onion, minced
1 1/2 cups chicken stock/broth
1/2 cup beer
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 tablesppon fish sauce (patis), optional
3 green chili peppers (finger chili)
1 can (400g) champignons, sliced
extra virgin olive oil
salt and pepper
dried ground oregano
dried basil
ground cayenne pepper (optional)

Here’s how:

Heat about 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil in a pan over medium heat. In a shallow bowl or plate, combine flour, pepper, salt and garlic powder. Thproughly wash and clean chicken legs, pat dry with paper towels and coat with flour mixture (don’t skip this step, the flour will thicken the sauce as the chicken simmers in the tomatoes). Pan-fry to sear the chicken legs, turning once to brown the other side.

Take seared chicken legs out of the pan, set aside. In the same pan, add a little more olive oil and saute the garlic, then the onion and tomatoes, cook until the water from the tomatoes dries out and the tomatoes are tender; then add a little of the chicken stock and the tomato paste, stir until the paste is well-blended. Add the rest of the chicken stock and beer.

Season with fish sauce, if using and pepper, stir to blend well, add 1/4 teaspoon of ground dried oregano and 1/4 teaspoon of dried basil, (rub it between your palms to release the oil). Boil; lower heat and let simmer for about 10-15 minutes, covered.

Add the chicken pieces and braise for about an hour or until the chicken legs are very,very tender and most of the sauce has evaporated. You may need to add some water if the liquid dries before cooking time is finished, you may want to lower your heat to prevent it from happening again. Give it an occasional stir and turn the chicken pieces halfway, have a taste and adjust seasoning if needed.

That’s it. Serve hot with pasta or steamed rice

note: Prepare this dish 1 1/2 -2 hours ahead of meal time or your family will get hungry waiting.

Happy cooking!


4 Responses to "Chicken Cacciatore (My way, with Beer)"

  1. anne   June 29, 2010 at 3:10 am

    my mon used to cooked this.. she doesnt know the name of the recipe, but she learned how to cook this when she was in Italy.. its delicious! 🙂

  2. The Duo Dishes   September 21, 2009 at 12:49 pm

    This is one of those classics that we should try to recreate. Looks really hearting and delicious.

  3. Karine   August 20, 2009 at 4:59 pm

    I love your chicken cacciatore! This is the first time I see a chicken cacciatore with beer…. interesting!

    • Olive   August 21, 2009 at 3:43 am

      Thanks Karine 🙂

      You should try it, it doesn’t make that much of a difference in my opinion, err taste at least.


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