Sunday Rewind: I’m a Thigh Guy

Chicken Scarpariello….- Originally posted May 8, 2012

As The Rantings of an Amateur Chef has been going since February of 2012, there are quite a few readers that have joined along the way. In an effort to bring back some great recipes that they may have missed, I will dedicate Sundays to re-posting a favorite that is at least two years old. I hope you enjoy! – The Ranting Chef

When I was a kid in the 70’s, my two favorite foods were spaghetti and fried chicken. Pizza was still uncommon in the house (unless it was the cardboard they used to call frozen pizza). Chicken nuggets, the mainstay of children for the last 30 years, had not been popularized yet by McDonald’s.

Spaghetti was pretty straightforward in our house, but fried chicken usually meant Kentucky Fried Chicken. Back before KFC and when the Colonel still ran the place, you had two choices – original recipe or extra crispy. You couldn’t go wrong with either choice. When a paper bucket of the glorious food came home it was always strategy to get a drumstick. If you were first to the bucket, and a drumstick could not be retrieved from the top, you were out of luck, as it was considered bad form to move chicken to get one. Of course, if you held back and the drumstick was on top, you lost.

Sometime in my teens, the desired piece went from drumstick to thigh. It is still my favorite today. The kids can have the drumstick, the partiers can have the wings, the adults can have the breast, but leave the thighs for me. When I can, I look for recipes that feature this piece.

Photo Apr 05, 6 14 54 PM

Chicken Scarpariello brings together not only thighs, but Italian sausage and my favorites, red peppers and onions.

The recipe calls for cherry peppers that you dice, I found already diced ones. Also, it calls for bone in thighs, but I used boneless ones. You just need to watch the cooking time as it may cook faster than the bone in ones.

Cook up the sausage.

Make sure there is a healthy amount of salt and pepper on the chicken.

Now I’m home….red peppers and onions in a frying pan!

A great combination of tastes.

And a beautiful plate too. I served this with the Broccolini Matzo Crumble. It works great over a bed of pasta.

Chicken Scarpariello


  • 1 link Italian sausage per person
  • 2 1/2 lb chicken thighs with skin and bone
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 red bell peppers, cut into 3/4-inch pieces
  • 2 to 4 jarred hot cherry peppers in vinegar, drained and finely chopped
  • 5 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1/3 cup dry white wine
  • 1/3 cup chicken broth
  • 1/3 cup chopped fresh parsley


Cook Italian sausage in skillet over medium heat until done. Set aside and keep warm.

Hack each thigh in half (or into thirds if large) across the bone with a cleaver or a sharp heavy knife. Pat chicken dry and season with salt and pepper. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a 12-inch heavy skillet over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking, then sauté chicken in 2 batches, beginning skin sides down, turning occasionally and adjusting heat to keep from burning, until cooked through and well browned on all sides, 10 to 12 minutes (add another tablespoon oil to skillet for second batch). Transfer chicken as cooked with tongs to a plate and keep warm, covered with foil.

Pour off all but 1 tablespoon fat from skillet. Add remaining tablespoon oil and cook onion, bell peppers, and cherry peppers (to taste) over moderate heat, covered, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 7 minutes. Add garlic and cook, stirring, until garlic is golden, about 2 minutes. Add wine and broth and boil, uncovered, until most of liquid is evaporated, about 4 minutes. Add chicken (with any juices accumulated on plate) and parsley and cook over moderate heat, stirring, until heated through, then season with salt.

Add back Italian sausage and serve.


Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Categories: Chicken, Fried, Italian, Low Carb, Main Dish, Pork, Recipes, Wine

Author:The Ranting Chef

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