Hunter's Chicken Stew

Hunter's Chicken Stew

Hunter's Chicken is found across Northern Italy, with many variations. This version uses meaty bone-in chicken thighs and is full of onions, mushrooms and tomatoes. It's also delicious served over egg noodles.

From EatingWell: September/October 2008
Yield: 8 servings
Active Time: 60
Total Time: 150


  1. 2 teaspoons plus 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  2. 3 medium onions, finely chopped
  3. 2 cloves garlic, minced
  4. 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  5. 12 bone-in chicken thighs, (about 4 pounds), skin removed, trimmed
  6. 1 teaspoon salt, divided
  7. 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper, plus more to taste
  8. 1 cup dry white wine, or vermouth
  9. 1 1/2 pounds button mushrooms, halved or quartered, depending on size
  10. 4 plum tomatoes, chopped
  11. 1 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth
  12. 2 bay leaves
  13. 2 teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary, or 3/4 teaspoon dried
  14. 1 1/3 cups cornmeal
  15. 6 cups cold water
  16. 1 teaspoon salt
  17. 1 tablespoon thinly sliced fresh basil


  1. Heat 2 teaspoons oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-low heat. Add onions and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook, stirring, until the onions are very soft and translucent, 2 to 4 minutes more. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the onions to a bowl; set aside. Remove the pot from the heat.
  2. Place flour in a shallow dish. Sprinkle chicken with 1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper. Dredge the chicken in the flour. Gently shake off any excess.
  3. Cook the chicken in 2 batches in the Dutch oven, using 1 tablespoon oil for each batch. Cook over medium-high heat, turning once, until browned on both sides, 2 to 4 minutes per side. Transfer the chicken to a plate.
  4. Pour wine (or vermouth) into the pot and cook, stirring and scraping up any browned bits with a wooden spoon, for 1 minute. Stir in mushrooms, tomatoes, broth, bay leaves and rosemary. Return the reserved onions to the pan. Add the chicken and any accumulated juices, making sure each piece is partially submerged. Bring to a simmer, then reduce heat to medium-low. Partially cover the pan and cook, gently stirring once or twice, until the chicken is very tender, about 1 hour.
  5. Meanwhile, combine cornmeal, water and salt in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly, until the mixture thickens, about 5 minutes. Partially cover the pan, reduce the heat to low and simmer, stirring occasionally, until thick and very creamy, 45 minutes to 1 hour. Remove from the heat and let stand, covered, while you finish the stew.
  6. Remove the chicken to a plate and tent with foil to keep warm. Bring the liquid in the pan to a boil over medium-high heat and cook until thickened, 10 to 15 minutes. Skim or blot any visible fat from the surface. Season with the remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper to taste. Return the chicken to the pan.
  7. Gently stir in basil. Serve the stew over the polenta.

Tips & Notes

  • Make Ahead Tip: Make polenta (Step 5) about 1 hour before serving. Prepare stew through Step 6. Cover and refrigerate for up to 1 day. Reheat stew and stir in basil (Step 7).


Nutrition Per Serving: 431 calories; 17 g fat (4 g sat, 8 g mono); 101 mg cholesterol; 31 g carbohydrates; 33 g protein; 3 g fiber; 706 mg sodium; 794 mg potassium.

Nutrition Bonus: Potassium (23% daily value), Iron (20% dv), Magnesium & Vitamin C (15% dv).

2 Carbohydrate Serving

Exchanges: 1 1/2 starch, 1 vegetable, 4 lean meat, 1 fat