For a tasty tomato Greek winter warming dish you can’t beat a kapama – this is a casserole that is made with a thick and pungent tomato sauce, add a kotopaulo – chicken and you’ve got a hearty Greek stew for those cold winter nights.
Rabbit can used instead of chicken for equally good results, but for the really best flavour make this recipe a day in advance and reheat gently before serving piping hot.
This hearty one-pot casserole has a succulent and distinct tangy flavour that will have your guests asking for the secret ingredients, and the recipe – try it and see!
Kotopoulo Kapama – Chicken Casserole Greek Style
Ingredients – serves 4 people
4 large chicken portions or breast meat
3 cinnamon sticks
10 allspice berries
2 tbsp flour
4 tbsp olive oil
2 celery sticks
2 medium carrots
400g tin tomatoes
300ml chicken stock
2 tbsp freshly chopped parsley or coriander
Salt and pepper
- Cut the chicken portions in half. Crush the cinnamon, cloves and allspice well and then mix in the flour, salt and pepper. Rub this mixture into the chicken flesh.
- Heat 3 tbsp of the olive oil in a large oven-proof casserole dish and fry the chicken pieces over a fairly low heat, the chicken may need to be fried in batches, until golden brown. Remove the chicken with a slotted spoon once browned and set it to one side for now.
- Finely chop the celery, carrots and onion. Add the remaining olive oil to the casserole dish and gently fry the chopped vegetables, until they begin to soften – about 10 minutes.
- Add to the casserole any of the leftover spiced flour mixture and fry for a minute or two then add the tin of tomatoes and crush them in the dish with a wooden spoon, breaking up the larger lumps of tomato flesh.
- Pour in the chicken stock and add the bay leaves then bring the liquid to nearly boiling. Lower the heat and put the chicken pieces back into the dish. Cover and leave to simmer on a low heat for 45 minutes to one hour or until the chicken is tender, stirring occasionally.
- When the chicken is ready stir in the chopped parsley or coriander, salt and pepper. The seasoning will depend on whether you used commercial stock cubes or home-made stock, check and adjust to taste.