This hearty, tomatoey stewed dish gets a low-carb, slow cooker makeover in this alternative to traditional chicken cacciatore. Cacciatore means “hunter” in Italian, so chicken cacciatore is literally “chicken hunter’s style.”
Rather than cooking all the ingredients at once, this dish does better in a two-part method. First I sauté the vegetables, reduce the liquid, and add tomato paste, before combining with the chicken in the crock pot. Otherwise, the dish can get overly watery.
Adding parmesan cheese rind is a trick I learned from Cook’s Illustrated magazine that adds a savory depth of flavor to the sauce.
1. Season chicken with salt and pepper. Put in a crock pot set to high, and cover. Alternatively, you can brown the chicken in a skillet and then transfer to the crockpot. You can use the same skillet for cooking the vegetables.
2. Heat olive oil over high heat in a large skillet. Cook the onion and green pepper for 2 to 3 minutes, then add the mushrooms. Two minutes later, add the garlic. Cook for another minute.
3. Add the tomatoes, wine, herbs, and more salt and pepper. Simmer for 5 to 10 minutes, until the liquid is almost completely boiled away. Taste and adjust seasonings, if necessary. If it tastes harsh or acidic, add just a touch of sweetener (one drop of Sweetzfree can do the trick).
4. Add the tomato paste and Parmesan cheese rind, and stir to combine. Spoon ingredients onto the top of the chicken, and cook for 3 hours on high or 6 to 8 hours on low. About half an hour before you are ready to eat, check and adjust seasonings one more time.