Pollo Alla Romana

(from xombi’s recipe box)

Source: Rachel Roddy

Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 60 minutes
Serves 4 people

Categories: Italian


  • 1.5 kg chicken, jointed into 8, or 8 thighs
  • 60g pancetta or bacon
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove
  • A sprig of Thyme, finely chopped (optional)
  • Salt and black pepper
  • 150ml dry white wine
  • 800g ripe, fleshy tomatoes, peeled and chopped
  • 4 large or 6 small red or yellow peppers
  • Capers (Handful)


  1. 1 Joint the chicken, making sure the pieces are at room temperature and dry. Cut the pancetta into short batons. In a large deep frying pan or heavy casserole, warm 2 tbsp olive oil, then fry the pancetta until the fat has rendered. Working in batches, if necessary, add the chicken pieces skin-side down and cook until a light golden crust has formed – about 8 minutes – then turn and brown the other side.

  2. 2 Assess how much fat is in your pan, adding more olive oil or pouring fat away. Peel and gently crush the clove of garlic and add to the pan along with the chopped rosemary, if using. Season with salt and pepper.

  3. 3 Add the wine and let it bubble away for a minute or two, then add the tomatoes. Cover the pan for 10 minutes, lifting the lid to stir halfway through. Then half-cover and cook over a medium-low heat for 45-60 minutes or until the tomatoes have reduced to a rich sauce and the chicken is tender. If the sauce looks dry, add a little water.

  4. 4 Meanwhile, prepare the peppers by roasting them whole at 200C/400F/gas mark 6 until they are charred and floppy. Tip them into a bowl and cover with clingfilm for 10 minutes, by which time the skin should pull away. Discard the skins and pips, then rip the pepper into thick strips.

  5. 5 In the last 10 minutes of cooking time, add the peppers to the pan so the flavours can mingle. Allow the dish to sit for at least an hour – overnight even. Eat room temperature or re-heat gently.

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