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Michele Scicolone's Chicken with Vinegar and Hot Pepper

This is a "Neapolitan-style" recipe from Michele's grandmother. Michele likes the chicken cut into 2-inch pieces. Have a butcher do that, or buy a cut-up chicken. Then, divide leg into drumstick and thigh portions and cut thigh in half along the bone. Cut off wing tips and divide wing in half. With poultry shears, cut breast into chunks.

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 chicken, cut into 2-inch pieces (about 3 1/2 pounds)
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
3 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
2/3 cup good-quality red wine vinegar

In large heavy skillet, heat oil over medium heat. Dry chicken well. Place chicken in skillet in single layer and brown on all sides. (Do not crowd pan; brown in batches, if necessary.)

Tip pan and spoon out all but 1 tablespoon fat. Return all chicken to pan. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Scatter garlic and crushed red pepper around chicken. Add vinegar and stir, scraping up brown bits on bottom of pan with wooden spoon.

Reduce heat to low, cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until chicken is tender and most vinegar has evaporated, about 15 minutes. If there is too much liquid left, uncover pan and simmer until reduced. If it is too dry, add 1 to 2 tablespoons warm water. Serve chicken with pan juices. Makes 4 servings

"A Fresh Taste of Italy"

Thursday, March 15, 2001

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