Mostly about food, this blog is just a place for me to throw things that are of interest to me. I appreciate you taking the time to stop by an look around. This represents just some of the stops on the various pathways that this amateur home cook finds himself.

You may find that these foods tend toward protein and away from carbohydrates - this is due to diabetic issues, so I try to only sparingly use carbs, and good ones at that. Of course, sometimes I forget....

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Monday, August 15, 2011

Chicken & Sausage Cacciatore Carbonara

There’s a pretty decent little Italian restaurant on San Antonio’s far north side that has some very tasty offerings. In particular, I like their take on sausage cacciatore. After taking some home and having it for lunch the next day, I realized that I could probably do a pretty fair job of it myself. So here we go with an enhanced version…

4 chicken thighs, boned, skinned, cut into chunks
4 links Italian sausage, about 12-16 oz. total; 2 wholes, 2 crumbled
2 green bell pepper – stemmed, seeded cut into half-strips
2 red bell pepper – stemmed, seeded cut into half-strips
1 lg. red onion, cut into strips
1 lb mushrooms, cleaned, cut in 1/3” slices - prepared
tomatoes 28 oz can, crushed, or 1 each 15 oz.r can of stewed & puree
4 cloves garlic, minced
Olive oil
1Tbsp Oregano
1 Tbsp basil
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
1 tsp rosemary
1/2 cup red wine – Marsala, Chianti, etc.
1/2 cup cooked and chopped bacon

Optional Garnish:
chopped flat-leaf parsley
Parmesan cheese, grated

See Mushrooms 101 for mushroom instructions.

Set a large skillet over medium heat.I quickly put together a simple tomato sauce by adding some olive oil and minced garlic in a large skillet and adding the tomatoes. To this I added some salt and pepper and and the herbs let that simmer.

After simmering and reducing for a while, the sauce will thicken and darken, like this. Stir occasionally so that it doesn't scorch. Now's the time to add the wine and stir all together, then let simmer some more.
Remove cooked mushrooms from their pan. Fry the crumbled and the link Italian sausage until the grease has rendered and the sausage is just starting to brown. Remove the sausage and drain the grease.
Slice the link sausages into 1/4" slices and finish cooking the pieces. When done, drain the grease and reserve the sausage pieces with the crumbled sausage.

Next, take the cut up chicken thighs and pepper both sides lightly. Place the chicken in the pan, waiting until it is lightly browned to turn.

When both sides are finished, remove from the pan and drain. Remove meats to plate/bowl and reserve.
Reheat the pan and add about 1-2 tablespoon of olive oil. When the oil is hot, add the peppers, onions and garlic.
When the vegetables are soft and start to brown, add the sausage stirring to incorporate it. Cook the vegetables and the sausage together for a few minutes. Once all incorporated, add in reserved cooked mushrooms and stir well.
By this point, the tomato sauce ought to be nice and thick.
Add your marinara sauce to the pan vegetables and sausage pan a little at a time while stirring, until the dish reaches desired consistency.
Finally, add in the bacon and mix it all well. Serve hot over pasta. I used whole wheat fettuccine, as it's a little better for you than the regular type.

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