Fennel, Porcini & Chicken Cacciatore

Fennel, Porcini & Chicken Cacciatore

Dried porcini give an earthy, punch to this Italian classic. Although it tastes great hot from the oven, the fennel-and-mushroom combination mellows beautifully overnight.

From EatingWell: October/November 2006
Yield: 8 servings
Active Time: 45
Total Time: 100


  1. 1/2 ounce dried porcini mushrooms
  2. 1 cup boiling water
  3. 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  4. 12 boneless, skinless chicken thighs, (about 3 pounds), trimmed of fat
  5. 2 green Italian frying peppers (Cubanelles) or 1 large green bell pepper, seeded and cut into rings
  6. 1 large onion, halved and thinly sliced
  7. 1 large fennel bulb (1 pound), trimmed, halved, cored and thinly sliced
  8. 3 cloves garlic, minced
  9. 1 tablespoon minced fresh rosemary
  10. 2 teaspoons freshly grated orange zest
  11. 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
  12. 3 tablespoons red-wine vinegar
  13. 3/4 cup dry white wine
  14. 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  15. 1 teaspoon salt


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Place mushrooms in a large bowl, pour boiling water over them and let soak.
  3. Meanwhile, heat oil in a large, high-sided skillet or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Working in batches, brown chicken on all sides, turning occasionally, 4 to 5 minutes. Transfer the chicken to a 9-by-13-inch baking dish.
  4. Reduce heat to medium and add peppers and onion to the pan; cook, stirring often, until soft, about 3 minutes. Stir in fennel; continue cooking, stirring often, until wilted, about 3 minutes.
  5. Add garlic, rosemary, orange zest and thyme; cook, stirring constantly, for 30 seconds. Pour in vinegar and cook for 1 minute, stirring and scraping up any browned bits. Remove from the heat.
  6. Drain the mushrooms in a fine sieve lined with a paper towel; reserve the soaking liquid. Rinse the mushrooms, then coarsely chop. Stir them into the pan along with the soaking liquid, wine, tomato paste and salt. Return to the heat, bring to a simmer, then pour the mixture over the chicken. Cover the baking dish with foil.
  7. Bake the cacciatore until bubbling, about 45 minutes. Let stand for 10 minutes before serving (or follow make-ahead instructions).

Tips & Notes

  • Make Ahead Tip: Bake, let cool for 1 hour, cover with foil and refrigerate for up to 3 days. Reheat, covered, in a preheated 350°F oven for 45 minutes.
  • Ingredient note: Like fresh mushrooms, dried have a shelf life. When purchasing them, look for whole mushrooms in the package without a lot of powdery dust or spiky shards; the color should be uniformly brown. Porcini can also be purchased online from Oregon Mushrooms at oregonmushrooms.com.


Nutrition Per Serving: 337 calories; 16 g fat (4 g sat, 7 g mono); 113 mg cholesterol; 10 g carbohydrates; 33 g protein; 3 g fiber; 450 mg sodium; 589 mg potassium.

Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin C (40% daily value), Selenium (31% dv), Zinc (23% dv), Iron (15% dv).

1/2 Carbohydrate Serving

Exchanges: 1 vegetable, 4 lean meat