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Playing Chicken, Peppers and Onions


  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 12 chicken breast tenders or 6 boneless, skinless thighs, halved
  • 1 teaspoon fennel seeds
  • 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flake
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 small bulb fennel, quartered, cored and thinly sliced
  • 2 cubanelle peppers, halved, seeded and thinly sliced
  • 1 mild or sweet red pepper, seeded, quartered and sliced
  • 1 onion, quartered and thinly sliced
  • 4 cloves garlic, sliced
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 cup dry white or red wine or chicken stock
  • 1 28-ounce can Italian tomatoes
  • A few leaves basil, torn
  • Crusty bread, for mopping
  • Freshly grated Parm, for topping


Serves: 4


Heat a couple tablespoons of olive oil, 2 turns of the pan, in a large, deep skillet over medium-high heat. Season the chicken with salt, pepper, fennel seed and red pepper. Cook, turning occasionally, until golden brown but still tender, 7-8 minutes. Remove chicken to a plate.

To the skillet, add a little more oil, 1 turn of the pan. Add fennel, peppers, onions and garlic, some salt and pepper, and partially cover the pan. Cook vegetables to soften 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add tomato paste then wine or stock and tomatoes. Break up tomatoes and simmer sauce 20 minutes to thicken. Add chicken back to pan and simmer 10 minutes more. Add basil and serve with bread and a little grated cheese.