Italian Bread Soup

Italian-style chicken casserole

Category: Main meal | Serves: 4 (serve 2 portions fresh; freeze the other 2)

Prep time: 30 minutes | Cooking time: 1 hour 15 mins


2 tsp olive oil

350g (12oz) small shallots, peeled

1 red pepper, deseeded and diced

3 carrots, sliced

6 skinless, boneless chicken thigh fillets (about 525g/1lb 3oz trimmed weight),trimmed of fat, each cut in half or into quarters

1 clove garlic, crushed (optional)

225g (8oz) button mushrooms

400g (14oz) can chopped tomatoes in rich natural juice

150ml (¼ pint) homemade or reduced-salt chicken stock

150ml (¼ pint) red wine

1 tsp each dried thyme and dried oregano

Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

1 tbsp cornflour

  1. Preheat oven to 180°C/160°C fan/gas mark 4.
  2. Heat oil in a flameproof, ovenproof casserole. Add shallots, red pepper and carrots; sauté over a medium heat for 5 minutes.
  3. Add chicken pieces; cook until sealed all over, turning occasionally. Add garlic (if using); cook for 1 minute, stirring. Stir in all remaining ingredients,  except cornflour; bring to the boil. 
  4. Cover; bake in oven for about 1 hour or until chicken is cooked and tender, stirring once.
  5. Remove from oven; return casserole to hob. Mix cornflour with a little cold water in a small bowl; stir into casserole.
  6. Bring to the boil, stirring; simmer for 2–3 minutes, stirring. Serve casserole with small baked potatoes, broccoli and green beans.

Cook’s tips:

  • To freeze 2 portions, cool cooked casserole completely, then transfer to an airtight container. Cover, seal and label. Freeze for up to 3 months. Defrost, then reheat until piping hot (in a moderate oven or gently on the hob) before serving.

Nutritional information

Italian-style chicken casserole nutritional information