This incredibly delicious dish is even more incredibly easy to prepare. All you’ll need to buy is two or three ingredients, fry them in olive oil, and add two spices and that you probably have sitting on the shelf. It takes only about an hour from cutting board to table!
My family is made up of a veritable goulash of characters and personality types but the one thing we all have in common is a love for olives. For as long as I can remember, Santa Claus has put a small jar of the little pimento-stuffed guys in my Christmas stocking, and he still does!
I stumbled upon an olive chicken recipe years ago and was tickled pink that I was finally able to eat olives as part of a main course. The original recipe, which I lost eons ago, was much more involved but this stripped-down version that I came up with myself is, in my humble but biased opinion, even better.
Warning: This recipe involves olives, which are part of the “love ‘em or hate ‘em food group” along with yogourt and liver. If you’ve never liked olives, this recipe will not magically transform them into something that will be ignored by your gag reflexes.
- 4 chicken breasts (or an entire small or medium chicken), diced.
- 700 grams (2 pints) of sliced or quartered mushrooms.
- 500 ml to 1 litre (2 to 4 cups) of olives. It’s important which type you use… get a variety that is marinated in an oily brine. I get either Sicilian or Calabrese marinated with herbs from my grocer’s bulk olive bins. Don’t purposely bring home extra brine… the flavour of the olives themselves will light up the chicken. Don’t use the pimento-stuffed jobs or any other pure brine ones. I tried Kalamata olives once but the dish didn’t turn out so great and they turned the meat a gross dark colour. You’ll probably have to remove the pits — the easiest way to do this is with a cherry pitter.
- 1 tablespoon of curry powder.
- black pepper, to taste.
- olive oil for frying.
- Brown the peppered chicken in a large pot with lots of olive oil.
- Add the curry powder, toss, and fry for a minute or two stirring occasionally.
- Add the olives and fry for a minute, stirring a couple of times. Add a cup of water and scrape anything that might be sticking off the bottom of the pot.
- Mix in the mushrooms and cover. Reduce the heat so is cooks at a medium simmer.
- Simmer for about 45 minutes until the mushrooms are done and the sauce is reduced (the cooking mushrooms will release a lot of water), checking about every 15 minutes to make sure it doesn’t cook dry.
That’s it! Serve on Basmati rice.
- Add fresh or frozen green beans during the last 10 minutes.
- Experiment by adding your favourite herbs.
- Instead of water, add a little wine to the pot when you put the olives in.
- Add a couple of dried Chinese red peppers when you add the olives.
- Leave out the mushrooms for “Olive Chicken Express”… add a cup of wine or chicken stock after the olives have been sauteed together for a minute or two. Cover and simmer for about 20 minutes, checking regularly to make sure it doesn’t boil dry.
That’s it… hope you enjoy it!
Note: If you happen to use my recipe commercially, I want a large chunk of change… preferably an amount I can retire on. Either that or a stupidly high paying do-nothing job, like the restaurant owner’s relative who sits at the table closest to the cash register and does nothing all day but drink coffee and eats the occasional meal.
That’s it! If you try this recipe, please let me know how things turned out. You can download a print-friendly PDF version of this recipe here. You can find links to other of my recipes and printable “Eat Sheets” here.
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- Day 2 with Mother’s Garden Olive Oil – Chicken, Pepper & Homemade Pesto Pasta (thebakerboyuk.wordpress.com)
- Coconut Lime Crusted Chicken (balancingpaleo.wordpress.com)
- Tomato, Mushroom and Macaroni Hotpot (hobbitkitchen.wordpress.com)
- Recipe – Mediterranean Chicken Kebab Salad (myjourneythroughthickandthin.wordpress.com)
- Mushroom Chicken Cacciatore (balanceandblueberries.wordpress.com)
- Easy Chicken and Broccoli Pasta (hungrygatorgal.wordpress.com)