I find the cuisine from the south of France and the one from Naples and Sicily very similar, the added herbs being the main difference. In this case, being "à la Provençale" it means you add "Persillade" which is a mixture of very finely minced parsley with garlic (proportion is 2 tablespoons of finely chopped parsley to 1 garlic clove) and it’s added just at the end of cooking with a squeeze of lemon juice. This is a chicken dish from Provence, quite rustic and good for winter. —Maria Teresa Jorge
chicken, cut in 8 pieces
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
onion, blonde, medium, chopped finely
1 1/2 pounds
tomatoes, red and ripe, peeled, no seeds and cut in pieces
garlic clove very thinly minced (for persillade)
3 1/2 ounces
basil leaves fresh, ripped with your hands
lemon freshly squeezed
black and white pepper
In This Recipe
Make the Persillade: Peel the garlic, remove the green part in the middle and mince very finely. Mince the parsley leaves very finely. Add together, mince together and set aside in a bowl and cover with plastic film.
Blanch the tomatoes, peel, cut in quarters take the seeds out and cut in pieces. Put in a colander and set aside so they loose any excess water.
Wash, clean and pat dry the pieces of chicken. Season with salt and freshly ground black and white pepper and dust with flour, just lightly coating the meat. Shake any exces flour.
In a large sautéing pan, over medium heat, add the olive oil and cook the pieces of chicken and cook for 30 minutes or until golden all around. If they start browning too quickly lower the heat. Remove the .chicken pieces to a plate and keep warm.
If the chicken is very fat, spoon out the excess fat. Add the finely diced onion to the sauté pan and let cook until it becomes translucent. Add the white wine and deglaze the pan, scraping with a wooden spoon any deposits in the pan. Let the alcohol evaporate completely and the wine reduce almost all.
Add the tomato pieces and cook over medium heat, mixing well with a wooden spoon until they have lost the water and you have a thick purée. Check the seasoning and add salt and pepper to your taste.
Add the black olives and the chicken pieces to the tomato sauce, simmer covered for 10 minutes. Add the Persillade and the shredded basil leaves, cook 2 minutes, add the lemon juice to enhance the flavours (1/2 a lemon) and serve immediately.