Stir-fried chicken breast with olives, capers & tomato

Isola Polvese at Trasimeno LakeUmbria Italy

Hello my friends, how have you been?

After a cold spring, summer is upon us and it’s hot, hot, hot. Has it been the same where you live?

Within a few days, around mid June, I found myself changing our food and clothes from winter to full summer. Now I’m fighting for the survival of my basil plants which more often than not end up freezing to death or burned! My beloved potted garden is suffering right now. After a spectacular crop of strawberries, I haven’t been able to plant anything.

On the other hand, Betty the cat has been enjoying the raised table as her private solarium, away from unwanted attention from Google the dog. Meanwhile, I carefully evaluate if I should kill anymore species from the vegetable world. I think I should wait.

view of countryside near Assisi from Agriturismo B&B Cooking School Alla Madonna del Piatto

For the rest, life is getting just a little more normal here at Alla Madonna del Piatto. We spent a wonderful day at the Polvese Island in the Trasimeno lake located just North of Perugia (photo above).

Most importantly, we have just welcomed the first 2 small groups of B&B visitors and the first cooking class in person since summer 2019. It’s been such a joy to have people in the kitchen and share a day doing what I love the most!

Review Agriturismo Alla Madonna del Piatto and Cooking School Assisi Italy

Should you not be able to make it to Italy this year, you could still join one of my online classes. Now that is so hot, I am offering fresh and easy recipes based on short cooking or no cooking. Online classes are still popular for birthdays and other celebrations, especially if you are unable to visit your beloved.

This month’s recipe, inspired to the famous pasta sauce Puttanesca, reflects the mood of the season. It’s a simple meal, ready in minutes, full of flavor but light and nutritious. As you know I have an inordinate fondness for eggplants, so I like to serve the chicken with soft grilled slices of this fantastic vegetable. However, you could use your favorite green salad, sliced cucumbers, steamed leaves, as long as you choose something not too sweet – e.g. arugula  – to balance the natural sweetness of the chicken.


  • 250 g (½ lb) organic chicken breast slices
  • 2 tablespoon corn starch
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove, finely minced
  • 1 cup small plum tomatoes halved or crushed canned  tomatoes½ cup  black or green olives
  • 1 tablespoon capers, rinsed well if in salt
  • 1 anchovy fillet packed in olive oil


  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped Italian parsley
  • 1 small fresh chili pepper diced

Cut chicken breast into small strips and toss with the corn starch.

Heat a deep-sided skillet or wok over medium-high heat, then add the olive oil. Add the chicken strips,  and cook stirring occasionally until lightly browned, 3 to 4 minutes. Sprinkle with salt and black pepper. Transfer to a plate and cover to keep warm.

Return the pan to low heat. Add the garlic, olives, anchovy and capers and cook until fragrant, 2 to 3 minutes. Add tomatoes and cook until they look soft and start to release their juices. If using canned  tomatoes, cook for 7-8 minutes until slightly thickened.  Stir the chicken back to the skillet along with any juices that have accumulated. Simmer to blend the flavors and reheat.
Taste and adjust seasonings accordingly. Scatter with parsley and diced chili pepper, if using. Serve with steamed vegetables or grilled eggplants like the ones in the photo below.

Serves 2.

Eas ìy grilled marinated eggplants


  1. Hi Friend! I will cook this recipe soon. Looking for quick recipes that don’t heat up the kitchen. It is hot in Richmond, VA. Thinking of you. ❤️

    • hello Sue, thinking of you too! there are days I wish I did not have to cook nor too heat, but this recipe is perfect for this weather, so simple and quick. Big hugs!

  2. Sounds like one of those wonderful quick and easy summer dishes that I love to enjoy this time of year. Nice for those days (and they come often when the weather’s this hot) when I don’t feel much like cooking!

    • thank you Frank, indeed this is super easy and flavorful, I hope you will enjoy it!

  3. Just found your site. I love Sagrantino di Montefalco and am excited about cooking from from the same region to serve with it. And Betty is adorable!!! We have two black and white cats (brothers) who are very sweet and fun!

    • thank you for visiting Alan!I hope you found suitable recipes for a great glass of Sagrantino!

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