Fricco' Di Pollo All' Arrabbiata

Chicken with spicy tomato sauce

This rustic chicken dish from Umbria is a great way of using up tomatoes that are just a bit too ripe for salads. The combination of garlic, chilli and the essential oils that exude from the finely chopped rosemary complement this dish perfectly. Simple to prepare with just a few ingredients, I’m sure this will be your go-to chicken dish. Serve with good, rustic bread to mop up the delicious juices. 


Serves 4 

  • 1kg (2lb 4oz) chicken pieces on the bone, such as thighs and drumsticks (either skin-on or skinless) 
  • 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil 
  • 3 garlic cloves, lightly crushed and left whole 
  • 1 red chilli, finely chopped 
  • 2 tbsp finely chopped rosemary needles 
  • 150ml (5fl oz) white wine 
  • 500g (1lb 2oz) ripe cherry or baby plum tomatoes, cut in half (or any ripe tomatoes you have) 
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • rustic bread, to serve 


  1. Heat the oil in a large frying pan over a high heat, add the chicken pieces, then reduce the heat to medium and cook the chicken on all sides to seal, about 15 minutes. Cover with a lid and cook for a further couple of minutes. Transfer the chicken to a plate and set aside. 
  2. Discard any fat remaining in the pan. 
  3. Return the pan to the heat, add the olive oil, then sweat the garlic, chilli and rosemary over a gentle heat for a minute or so. Return the chicken pieces to the pan, add some salt and pepper, then increase the heat, add the wine and allow it to evaporate. Reduce the heat again, stir in the tomatoes, cover with a lid and cook over a gentle heat for 30 minutes until the chicken is cooked through. 
  4. Serve immediately with lots of good rustic bread. 
Extract credit to: ‘Gennaro’s Cucina: Hearty Money-Saving Meals from an Italian Kitchen’ by Gennaro Contaldo (Pavilion Books). Image credit to David Loftus.

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