La Vera Cucina

Genevieve’s Chicken Scarpelli

For years, Chef Henry DiTonto has been satisfying regulars at Steve’s Sizzling Steak, in Carlstadt, NJ, by preparing their favorite cuts of beef to their precise specifications. But at home, one of his favorite dishes is his Grandmother Genevieve’s Chicken Scarpelli. The mingled aromas of sautéing peppers, chicken, and sausage still bring back plenty of warm family memories. Henry suggests enjoying it over your favorite sturdy pasta, like penne or rigatoni.



  • 1 pound (dry weight) rigatoni pasta
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 cups chopped onion
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh garlic
  • 1 pound spicy Italian sausage, casings removed
  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh Italian parsley
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup roasted red pepper strips
  • 2 pickled hot cherry peppers, sliced 1/4″ thick
  • 2 tablespoons seasoned bread crumbs



Cook pasta in boiling, salted water until al dente. While pasta cooks, heat oil in large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic; cook until onion is tender. Add sausage, cook, stirring to break up meat. Cook until sausage is browned. Add chicken, chicken stock and parsley. Cook, stirring, until chicken is almost cooked through. Season with salt and pepper. Stir in roasted red pepper strips and cherry peppers. Cook briefly to finish chicken. Stir in bread crumbs. When pasta is cooked, drain and toss with chicken and sausage.

Serve immediately. Makes 4 to 6 servings.