Cacciatore, which means “hunter” in Italian, is one of the classic Mediterranean Diet recipes. Hunters would eat this simple dish after a successful day in the woods. Originally, it was eaten without tomatoes, because tomatoes were brought to Italy from the New World.
Beef cacciatore recipes vary depending on the region of Italy where it is made in. For example, in Southern Italy, they might use anchovies, olives, and sometimes spicy peppers. In northern Italy, they use more ground vegetables like carrots, celery, and onions in their cacciatore dishes.
The Mediterranean Diet is based on freshness and what’s available, and you can see it clearly here with this dish. I love how simple and widely available the ingredients are for this beef cacciatore, but the dish doesn’t come out tasting simple at all. There is a depth of flavor with the sweet peppers blended into the sauce that makes this one of our favorite Italian dishes at Mediterranean Living.
Recipe Additions: If you have some extra red wine you can add a 1/4 cup while it simmers for an even richer flavor.