Meat or poultry cooked in tomato sauce is a staple in most Greek kitchens, including our parents’. This type of meal is called kokkinisto, which means red or reddened and refers to the fact that the cooking liquid is tomato sauce. Whether you choose to use meat, as we did in our veal kokkinisto recipe, or poultry as we are doing here, you will find that this method of cooking results in something absolutely delicious, with minimal effort. How wonderful is that!?
We really appreciate this recipe because chicken is something that most people love, including our families. Although we enjoy roast chicken, youvetsi with chicken, avgolemono soup with chicken, and roasted chicken thighs, when chicken is prepared as a kokkinisto you get an entirely different supper experience. Variety is the spice of life (note: our parents would argue that oregano is the spice of life). The only thing that makes this chicken kokkinisto better is the side that it is served with; you want something that will help you sop up all the delicious sauce. Rice, mashed potatoes and pasta are all great options, but we must say, kokkinisto with home-made French fries is the ultimate combination.
Simple ingredients mean that it is even more important to be sure and use the best quality ingredients you can. For us, that means farm-raised organic chicken, Greek olive oil and our parents’ homemade tomato sauce. If you haven’t made our parents’ tomato sauce, or have run out because you’ve used it for other delicious things like fasolatha with tomato or roasted cauliflower, then go ahead and use good quality tomato sauce that you have purchased.
Although you can make this recipe with pre-cut chicken pieces it is much more economical to buy a whole chicken and cut it up yourself. If you’re unsure of how to proceed, you can do a quick Google search; there are lots of helpful videos out there showing you how to carve poultry.
It is important to remove most of the skin, and as much excess fat, as you can from the chicken. Although you will be browning the chicken pieces before adding them to the pot with the tomato sauce, you will not end up with nice crispy skin…so better to get rid of it.
We have already posted the recipe for homemade French fries, however we have included the recipe here as well. If you would like to read the original post, along with all of the helpful hints, you can follow the link here.
Mia Kouppa: Chicken kokkinisto with French fries
- 1 whole chicken (approximately 3 – 4 pounds)
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 1/3 cup (80 ml) olive oil
- 1/2 tablespoon (7 ml) salt
- 1/4 teaspoon (1 ml) ground black pepper
- 2 cups (500 ml) tomato sauce
- 1 teaspoon (4 ml) cinnamon
- Carve your chicken into 8 – 10 serving size pieces ( 2 drumsticks, 2 thighs, 2 breasts (which you can cut in half) and 2 wings). Remove excess fat and skin.
- Place your chicken in a large bowl and pour the juice of one lemon over the pieces. Add salt and pepper over the chicken and distribute it evenly.
- Add 1/3 cup olive oil to medium sized frying pan. Turn heat up to medium high and add the chicken pieces, being careful not to overcrowd the pan. You may need to cook the chicken in 2 batches. Watch video of them frying here.
- Fry the chicken for about 4 – 5 minutes per side, until golden brown. As your chicken pieces cook, transfer them to a medium sized pot. When all of your chicken has cooked and has been placed in the pot, pour the cooking oil into the pot as well.
- To the pot add the tomato sauce and cinnamon. Bring to a boil and then reduce the heat to medium. Cover the pot and cook for 45 minutes.
- Serve the chicken with sauce. Enjoy!
Mia Kouppa: French Fries
- Potatoes (average 1 – 2 large potatoes per serving, depending on how hungry people are)
- Vegetable oil
- Sea salt
- Dried oregano
- Prepare your potatoes by peeling them, cutting them into 1/4 inch thick slices, and soaking them for at least an hour (longer is better) in cold water.
- Drain potatoes and dry using a clean kitchen towel or paper towels.
- Heat oil in deep frying pan or a pot (at least 1 inch of oil).
- Insert one potato and when that potato starts to sizzle, drop additional potatoes into the oil carefully. Do not overcrowd the pan. Cook over medium / high heat for approximately 15 minutes or until potatoes are golden brown on all sides.
- Remove carefully with a slotted spoon and let drain in a colander lined with paper towels. Sprinkle with sea salt and oregano while still hot.
- Repeat with remaining potatoes. Enjoy.