Chicken stew with orange, tomatoes and olives over polenta

chicken stew

Tonight I will embark on making my husband happy through his stomach!  He has had a few rough days at work and needs some comfort food.  For him it’s anything stewy, pasta-like or just really heavy.  Tonight I will cook a chicken stew served over polenta.  He needs a little Italian boost.  When living in Italy he could get all his favorites for lunch, but now here in Southern Cal, I will try and recreate our little Monza living.  I will pull out my instant polenta tarragna that I bought in Italy, it’s delicious and only takes 5 mins to make.  But that doesn’t mean I can’t act like I’ve  standing in front of a hot stove stirring the polenta, nonstop.  I can still bitch like I have and I’m really good at it, my husband will attest to that, but if he knows what’s good for him, he’ll just say how delicious it is and thank me a bizillion times over:)

So this recipe is based on something I found in the Italian William Sanoma cook book.

1 medium sized egg plant

3 cloves of garlic

1/2 shallot

Olive oil



4-5 tomatoes, peeled

dried or fresh oregano

1 orange

bunch of black olives

Chicken pieces: I used two thighs and two wings.  Sometimes I use a whole chicken cut up, depends on how many I’m serving.  However, if you are going to use more than 4 pieces of chicken, adjust the ingredients.

Chop eggplant in cubes and place in a strainer with lots of salt for about 30 mins.  This is to soak up all the bitterness.  You should wash the eggplant and dry when ready to use.  I don’t, but I’m not so great with watching my salt intake.  I think it adds flavor to the sauce.  Cook chicken in a little bit of olive oil.  Brown on both sides for about 3-4 mins per side.  Place on plate.  Lower heat and garlic and shallot.  Let cook for about 2 mins. Return chicken to pan.  Add the juice of the orange along with the orange zest, coating chicken.  Add the tomatoes, breaking them up into the orange juice.  Add the olives and egg plant.  cook covered for 30 mins on low.  Uncover, mix it up and cook for about 15 more minutes.  I usually make this way ahead of time, so by the time my husband who tends to be late finally gets home, the chicken is falling off the bone.  But it’s still delicious.  The trick is to get the polenta right.  So now i”m off to make the polenta.

Hope you enjoy!


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