Cozy and comforting, Chicken Contadina is a farm style Italian chicken stew made with fresh veggies, Italian herbs, garlic and white wine. This recipe creates the most tender and flavorful chicken in an amazing sauce! Serve on its own or over rice, potatoes or noodles.
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This last week I had the honor of attending Brendon Burchard Influencer conference and my mind was blown.
Not only did every one of the speakers light that stage on fire, but I also walked out of that conference with business tools that were the missing puzzle piece for my business.
It was empowering to the umpteenth degree for me.
Do you know what else was really empowering?
Revisiting my passion for creating wholesome, easy meals that are as comforting as a warm hug.
It really is one of the joys in my life to create a meal that I know is not only nourishing to your health but also to your soul.
Needless to say, this Chicken Contadina is one of those dishes.
It’s packed full of flavor, easy to make and has a ton of healthy ingredients.
What is Chicken Contadina?
The word Contadina means peasant woman and/or farmer. Knowing this helps to understand why this dish is called what it is. Chicken Contadina is a rustic Tuscan style chicken stew using affordable farm grown ingredients.
My version of this dish adds in hearty mushrooms and wholesome spinach to help increase the nutritional density while still being fun to eat. Please see the Flavor and Ingredient Variations section below to personal this stew for you and your family.
How To Make Tuscan Chicken Stew
- Sprinkle chicken pieces with salt and pepper and then coat with flour. Sear chicken until lightly browned about 4 mins per side.
- Remove chicken from pan. Sauté chili pepper flakes, celery, onions and carrots until slightly softened, about 6 mins.
- Add herbs and tomato paste. Cook for 1-2 mins.
- Add garlic and cook for 1 min.
- Stir in wine and lower heat. Add in chicken pieces, tomatoes and mushrooms.
- Cook on low heat for 1 hour.
- Add in spinach and cook for an additional 5 mins.
- Whenever making tomato based soups or stews best results generally come from using enameled cast iron dutch ovens and this one is not only affordable compared to most but also is high quality.
- Stainless steel food tongs makes for easy turning of the chicken while searing and these are my favorite for searing.
- A good quality chef’s knife can make all the difference when it comes to chopping veggies. To this this day this is still my favorite brand not only for it’s quality but also its affordability.
Flavor and Ingredient Variations
- Vegetables– The carrots and celery add a sweet and flavorful depth to this stew. However, if you are desiring a more savory taste rather than sweet use 1 cup fresh fennel finely chopped to replace the carrots. Also bell pepper, eggplant and/or green beans could be a tasty alternative.
- Herbs and Spices– Rosemary really is the most predominant herb for this Chicken Stew Recipe. I personally enjoy the flavor combination of rosemary, oregano, fennel and red chili pepper flakes. If this herbs are undesirable, please mix and match your favorites. However, it is recommended that either rosemary or oregano be used.
- Liquids– For this stew I used 1 cup Sauvignon Blanc. Using it added a beautiful depth of flavor due to the acidity of the wine. Be that as it may, there are many home cooks who are not comfortable using wine in cooking. To substitute use chicken broth in place of the wine and add in the juice of 1 lemon or 2-3 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar.
What To Serve With Contadina Chicken
Personally my favorite way to eat this Italian Chicken Stew is served over cooked brown rice. However, this dish would also be delicious with mashed potatoes, biscuits, crusty French bread or crispy baked potatoes.
More Delicious Italian Recipes
- 3-3 1/2 lbs chicken legs & thighs
- salt & pepper *for chicken pieces
- 1/2 cup flour
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 1/2 tsp red chili pepper flakes
- 2 small carrots diced *diced, about 1 cup
- 3 stalks celery *diced, about 1 1/2 cup
- 1 med onion *diced, about 1 1/2 cups
- 1 tsp ground fennel seeds
- 4-5 sprigs fresh rosemary *chopped, see below for dried amounts
- 1 tbsp dried oregano
- 2 tbsp tomato paste
- 8-10 cloves garlic *crushed
- 1 cup dry white wine
- 16 oz grape or cherry tomatoes *left whole
- 16 oz white button mushrooms *left whole
- 8 oz bag baby spinach
- Lightly salt and pepper all sides of chicken pieces and coat with flour.
- Heat oil in an enamled cast iron pan over med/high heat. Working in batches sear chicken until lightly browned, about 4 mins per side. Remove chicken and set aside.
- Keep dutch oven over the same heat and add chili pepper flakes, onions, celery and carrots. Sauté until slightly softened, about 6-8 mins stirring occasionally.
- To the pan add herbs and tomato paste. Stir and continue cooking for 1-2 mins. Add garlic and cook for an additional min.
- Stir in wine and lower heat to low. Add in chicken, tomatoes and mushrooms. Cover and cook on low heat for approximately 1 hour, making sure to stir occasionally.
- Add in spinach, stir and cook for an addittional 5 mins. Serve over brown cooked rice.
- The secrets to searing chicken is to let the pan heat with the oil. You know it is hot enough if when you place the tip of the chicken into the pan you hear a sizzle. Once you add the chicken pieces do not attempt to move until the chicken no longer sticks to the pan. At this point it is ready to turn.
- If fresh rosemary is unavailable grind dried rosemary either using a mortar and pestle or coffee grinder and use 1/2 tbsp. If the dried rosemary is older and not as fragrant, a full tbsp will be needed.
- Before adding the dried oregano to the pan rub it between the palm of your hands to help release the oils.
- Since carrots add a subtle sweetness to the stew they may be removed.
- If using fresh fennel eliminate the dried fennel.