A take on the classic puttanesca sauce, spooned over chicken and baked, creating a deliciously tangy and hearty meal in no time.
Most people know the story of Spaghetti alla Puttanesca, about a tomato-based savory sauce that the “ladies of the evening” could prepare very quickly, or literally translated to “spaghetti of the whore.” It is a very popular, delicious and quick sauce to make, with just a few quick-cooking ingredients you can serve it over pasta in a matter of minutes.
With this recipe, I decided to make this simple sauce, but instead of tossing it with spaghetti, I topped oven-roasted chicken pieces with this tangy sauce, to make it a new entrée that can be served as an easy, flavorful and healthy chicken dinner.
Step by Step Guide to Making Chicken alla Puttanesca
Preparing the Chicken
- Preheat the Oven: Set your oven to 350°F (175°C).
- Brown the Chicken: In a large cast-iron skillet, heat olive oil and smashed garlic over medium-high heat. Place chicken pieces skin side down and brown for 10 minutes, turning once. Remove chicken and set aside.
- Prepare the Skillet: Discard excess oil from the skillet, leaving only a small amount for cooking.
Making the Puttanesca Sauce
- Sauté Garlic: Add fresh olive oil to the skillet and sauté quartered garlic until translucent.
- Add Sauce Ingredients: Stir in sliced olives, capers, half of the torn basil, and oregano. Cook for 1 minute.
- Add Tomatoes: Incorporate diced tomatoes, cooking for 3 minutes. Season with salt and chili flakes.
- Combine Chicken and Sauce: Return chicken to the skillet, spooning sauce over the pieces. Add chicken stock and cover the skillet with a lid or aluminum foil.
- Bake: Place the skillet in the preheated oven and bake for 1 hour or until chicken is tender and cooked through.
- Garnish and Serve: Remove from the oven and garnish with the remaining fresh basil leaves. Serve hot, ideally with a side of pasta or bread.
- Browning the Chicken: Ensure chicken is well-browned for enhanced flavor.
- Garlic Caution: Be careful not to burn the garlic while sautéing.
- Sauce Consistency: Adjust the seasoning and consistency of the sauce to taste.
- Fresh Basil: Adding fresh basil at the end maintains its vibrant flavor.
- Serving Suggestion: Complement the dish with pasta, polenta, or crusty bread.
Francesco Romano was born in Italy and has been living in America for 25 years. As he was growing up, he didn't realize how spoiled he was! He had two of the best chefs under one roof, his Grandmother Nonna Sara and his Mama Francesca, who made every meal from scratch and with love. As a kid, he would sit in the kitchen for hours while these women were hard at work, enjoying the smells, tasting when he was allowed to, and later being put to work to help make fresh pasta. It wasn’t until he was a grown up, moved away from home, and later to America, that he understood how much of his heritage and family centered on food. It was always made from fresh seasonal ingredients and was a way of bringing the family together to savor, to bond and to enjoy. On his site you WILL find mouth-watering food that is fresh, easy and authentic Italian, straight from my Mama’s kitchen to yours.