Il Talismano della Felicita, Italy

Recipe #1: Pollo Alla Cacciatore


WHAT A DAY! I woke up at seven to go to work, worked for 7 hours, attended my German class during my lunch break, then attended my French class, and arrived home pretty much devoid of energy and STARVING! Luckily, when you are tired, nothing is quite as enticing as a good meal. Especially if that meal is Pollo a la Cacciatore Maddalena.

Like all recipes that I have seen in Il Talismano della Felicita, the meal was in itself was not complicated, but deciphering the lines upon lines of instructions was. Pollo alla Cacciatore means Hunter’s Chicken and probably started as a hunter’s dish. Originally the meal was served with pheasants or partridge, as well as rabbit or wild boar. Now, it’s most commonly made with chicken. The basics of this dish are quite simple, onion, garlic, herbs, and wine. Less common in the Italian versions of Cacciatore, is the marinara sauce or tomatoes that are often served in America. (All of the recipes in for cacciatore in Il Talismano do not include tomato sauce as one of the ingredients.) Depending on the region or the season it can be served with forest mushroom, onions, olives, capers or potatoes.

Here is the recipe that I used (Tomorrow I will provide the literal translation):


  • Salt and Pepper to Taste
  • Four chicken legs (I used chicken legs because I went to an expensive grocery store and refused to pay $10 for chicken breast. You can probably use any type of chicken to make this dish. If there is still some skin on it, the fat will help to flavor your dish)
  • Four Mushrooms
  • 1/2 a stalk of celery (NOTE: I used too much celery in my recipe. You should use it for taste only)
  • 2 tbsps parsley
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1 medium onion
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 cup white wine

1. Heat a small amount of olive oil in the pan heat until medium-high heat then coat the chicken with salt and pepper and place it in the pan. Let the chicken braise for a few minutes until it begins to brown on all sides. Remove the chicken.

2. Reduce the heat and add your chopped onions, celery, garlic, 3 bay leaves, and parsely to the olive oil and meat sauce. Leave until the onions are translucent.

3. Once the onions are translucent add the chicken and mushrooms. Stir until mushrooms have turned a dark reddish brown.

4. Reduce the heat to low and add the white wine. Cover the pan and wait until wine has reduced by half.

5. Serve with Salad or Pasta

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