Chicken Cacciatore Formato Brothers Style

Thanks to our wonderfully talented friend, Gary Marino, here’s a new version of Chicken Cacciatore, Formato Brothers Style

  • 8 chicken thighs
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup red wine
  • ¼ cup of Kalamata Olives
  • 1 Bottle of tomato sauce
  • 1/2 cup of Formato Brothers Hot Giardiniera


In a large pot, heat the oil over a medium-high flame.  Heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil over medium-high heat in a large, heavy nonstick skillet. Season the chicken with salt and pepper and brown, in batches, for 5 minutes on each side. Transfer the chicken pieces to a bowl as they are done.

Remove the skin from the chicken, pour the fat off from the pan and discard.  (Short cut:  buy precooked chicken, remove the skin and cut it up.)


Turn the heat down to medium then add chopped garlic and cook until the garlic begins to soften, about 5 minutes. Stir in the wine and bring to a boil, then turn down the heat to low.

Add one bottle of tomato sauce

Add 1/2 cup Formato Brothers Hot Giardiniera

Add ¼ cup of Kalamata Olives

Stir and simmer for 20 minutes.

Add cooked chicken to the sauce mixture.

Stir and simmer for 30 minutes to allow chicken to be flavored by the sauce mixture.  OMG……….the flavor is amazing if stored overnight in your refrigerator.

This classic Italian dish must have hundreds of versions, all resulting in a rustic braise of chicken, aromatic herbs and spices. “Some like it hot” my version uses Formato Brothers Hot Giardiniera as the heat and flavor component.  If you prefer a milder sauce then I suggest using Formato Brothers Muffuletta as the flavor enhancer.


Gary Marino, Formato Friend & Chef Extraordinaire

Steak Stuffed Mushrooms

Steak stuffed mushrooms

  • Dice 2 lbs cooked steak (ok to use leftovers from last nite’s dinner).
  • Remove stems from 50-60 large white mushrooms, then chop into small pieces.
  • Spray mushroom caps w/ butter spray.
  • Finely dice 5 cloves garlic.
  • In a heated frying pan add 3 Tblsp EVOO.
  • Saute mushrooms stems until soft.
  • Add chopped garlic.
  • Add diced meat.
  • Add 1/2 tsp sea salt.
  • Add 1/2 tsp pepper.
  • Add 1/4 cup Cabernet Sauvignon.
  • Cook about 5 mintues.
  • Stuff mushrooms.
  • Bake 15-18 minutes.
  • Sprinkle w/ parmigiano reggiano shredded cheese & serve w/ Cabernet Sauvignon or any other wine you like.

This can be frozen for a couple months, but why save this delicious appetizer or main dish?  Enjoy!

Options:  add finely chopped Formato Brothers Eggplant Salad or Formato Brothers Muffuletta Olive Salad for a unique tasting dish.


Crispy Hot Muffuletta Ravioli

Here’s what you need for a delicious snack or appetizer:

  • Cooked turkey chopped into tidbit size pieces
  • Formato Brothers Hot Muffuletta Olive Salad
  • Wonton wrappers
  • Oil from FB Hot Muffuletta Olive Salad

Prepare wonton filling:

Chop turkey into small tidbit size pieces
Add Formato Brothers Hot Muffuletta ( to taste ) and mix in a large bowl

Heat oven to 350 degrees

Spray cookie sheet or large oven tray with non-stick Canola oil ( or vegetable oil spray or olive oil spray if you prefer )
Place wonton wrappers on tray, evenly spaced so that sides do not touch each other or tray/pan edges
Place a tablespoon of turkey/muffuletta mixture on wonton wrapper
Wet all four edges with water
Place another wonton on top of wonton with turkey/muffuletta mixture
Seal top wrapper to get any air pockets out by pressing edges together
Brush lightly with a small amount of hot muffuletta oil on one side only

Place tray(s) in oven at 350 degrees for 12 minutes or until crisp

Enjoy !

Crispy Hot Muffuletta Ravioli 113011 a

Crispy Hot Muffuletta Raviolia 113011 b

–Andrea Formato











Mini Muffuletta Sandwich

  1. Slice an 8″ – 10″ Italian round loaf in half to create upper & lower halves.
  2. Spread at least one cup of Formato Brothers Muffuletta Olive Salad on one of the halves.
  3. Add layers of salami & provolone cheese. Close the sandwich, cut into quarters or eighths & enjoy!

A true muffuletta sandwich will include additional layers of mortadella or prosciutto or capicolla & another sice of provolone and/or mozzarella. Some recipes call for sprinkled chopped cloves of garlic as well. It’s your choice. The Italian Muffuletta Sandwich originated in the early 20th century in New Orleans.