Monday, January 2, 2012

Spicy Chicken Giardiniera

Have you ever had a meal at a restaurant that you simply could not get out of your head. For the past few weeks Joe has been in agony reminiscing about a chicken dish we had at this small Italian eatery back in November.
Spicy Chicken Giardiniera
First, let me start off by revealing that cold weather makes us (Joe and I) seriously crave spicy food. I don't know what it is but when the temperature drops the extra hot sauce comes out... and it has been especially cold here in Chicago.
Me and Cindy (Courtesy: Cindy Cieluch)
So when my friend, the incredibly talented photographer, Cindy Cieluch came to visit from Montana and invited us to a nice dinner at La Scarola a few weeks ago we were hungering for heat!  To our delight we saw Pollo alla Pasquinelli on the menu.  This dish had it all: chicken sauteed with onions, artichoke hearts, tomatoes, prosciutto and then smothered in a sauce made of gorgonzola and hot giardiniera.  

Yum.... spicy giardiniera!!
LET ME TELL YOU ABOUT GIARDINIERA!  It is a wonderfully zesty mix of hot peppers, carrots, celery, olives and spices enveloped in luscious olive oil and tangy vinegar.  To say it is popular in Chicago would be the understatement of the century.  (No kidding... my mouth is watering just writing about this!) 
Peppers, carrots, celery... oh my!
Here in Chi-town we typically top our popular Italian Beef sandwiches with this stuff.  We always have a jar or two in our fridge!  So we were thrilled to see our favorite spicy condiment used in this chicken dish.  Why hadn't we thought of that?  Just as Joe finished the last bite of his meal he made me promise to try to recreate it at home.

Look at those hot peppers!

So here goes:

Adapted from La Scarola's "Pollo alla Pasquinelli"

Hot!  Hot!  Hot!

  • 1 pound of bone-in, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 14 ounce can of quartered artichokes, drained
  • 1 cup hot giardiniera in oil, drained
  • 28 ounce can diced tomatoes with juice
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 1 cup chicken stock 
  • olive oil
Veggie Ham Crescent Wreath ReciDirections

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in large dutch oven over medium-high heat.  Add chicken and cook until it's well browned on both sides.  Remove the chicken and set aside.
  • Add onions and cook for 3 minutes.  Add garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.  Pour in the wine and scrape up any brown bits.  Add tomatoes with juice, artichokes, drained giardiniera, chicken and chicken stock. Salt and pepper to taste. 
  • Bring to a simmer.  Cover and bake for 20 minutes or until chicken is cooked through.
  • Serve alone or over pasta. 
Yield: 4 servings

Note:  BE WARNED - THIS IS A PRETTY SPICY RECIPE.  If you want to tone down the spiciness you can use medium or mild giardiniera.  You will still get the tangy bite from the veggies without the heat.  I also omitted the gorgonzola and prosciutto from the original recipe because we didn't have it.  Enjoy! 

1 comment:

  1. This looks delish and I am going to make it tonight with some homemade giadiniera! Was the blue cheese and proscuitto just added in at the end or with all the other ingredients?