Serafina's Chicken and Olives

Total Time
1hr 45mins
Prep 15 mins
Cook 1 hr 30 mins

My Mother's side of the family is from Siracusa, Sicily, where there is a lot of Greek influence in the cooking. Serafina was my Great Aunt and this was her 'signature dish'. We never had a 'recipe' for this dish until my Mom and I decided to write it down recently. You can shortcut this recipe by using left over broth and chicken from the last pot of chicken soup you've made. Just skip down to the frying pan directions. (I'm totally guessing on the prep/cook time... if you're using leftover chicken soup, cut about an hour off the cook time) We even eat this cold!

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Place chicken in pot with cold water, slowly bring to a simmer.
  2. Skim the foam that rises to the surface as the chicken simmers.
  3. When the foam stops rising to the surface (approx 20 minutes of simmering) add 1 cup (approx) of celery cut into chunks, the carrot and one onion cut into quarters, bay leaf and parsley.
  4. Simmer uncovered until liquid is reduced by more than one half and chicken is falling off the bone.
  5. Remove vegetables and bay leaf and discard.
  6. Take chicken off the bone, discard bones and skin and break large pieces of chicken up into bite sized pieces.
  7. In a large frying pan sauté garlic and diced medium onion until softened (2-3 minutes).
  8. Add remaining 1 ½ c celery that also has been diced and olives.
  9. Saute’ an additional 2-3 minutes.
  10. Add chicken, 4 cups of the reserved broth and vinegar.
  11. Simmer until celery is crisp-tender approximately 15-20 minutes.
  12. When serving drizzle with the remaining olive oil and black pepper.
Most Helpful

What a great dish! I only made a few changes, but the changes I made would not have changed the dish all that much. First I added 1 stick butter to the pot in step one. I do this all the time with chicken noodle soup or chicken and dumplings, as it makes the stock richer. Second, I left out the carrots because I didn't have any on hand. My DH and I both enjoyed this dish with a fresh salad and warm Italian bread. Then I had leftovers today for lunch over wheat pasta and a little extra olive oil. Delicious! Thank you Chrissy for sharing your Aunt's recipe. I'm sure it will be one of our favorites from now on.

Kim D. July 13, 2007

This was THE best! The olives and the vinegar lend such a wonderful flavor. I added more garlic (5 cloves). Thank you for this wonderful recipe - I will be making it often, and can't wait to "eat it cold."

Mimiyanda January 12, 2005