In this dish from Melissa Clark's Dinner, roast chicken meets pizza—and the two get along great. First, seared chicken is covered in a garlicky tomato sauce. Then bocconcini (knots of mozzarella) are scattered over the top, and the dish is broiled until it achieves gooey perfection.

Serves 4


  • 3 1/2 pounds chicken pieces
  • 2 tsp. kosher salt, divided
  • 1 tsp. ground black pepper, divided
  • 1 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 5 ounces pancetta, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 4 anchovy fillets (optional)
  • 1 Tbsp. capers, drained
  • 1/4 tsp. red chili flakes
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 3 1/2 cups diced tomatoes
  • 1 large sprig basil, plus chopped leaves, for serving
  • 8 ounces bocconcini, halved

    Total time: 1 hour

    Pat chicken dry and season with 1 1/2 tsp. salt and 1/2 tsp. pepper.

    In a large broiler-safe skillet over medium-high heat, add oil and pancetta. Cook until crisp. Transfer to a paper towel–lined plate.

    Add chicken to skillet. Sear until browned, about 10 minutes. Transfer to a plate. Pour off all but 1 Tbsp. oil from skillet.

    Add garlic, anchovies (if using), capers, and chili flakes to skillet. Sauté 1 minute. Add tomatoes, basil sprig, and remaining salt and pepper. Cook, crushing tomatoes with a spatula, about 10 minutes.

    Heat oven to 400°. Add chicken to skillet, transfer skillet to oven, and cook, uncovered, about 30 minutes. Remove from oven and scatter bocconcini over chicken.

    Place skillet under broiler until cheese bubbles, about 3 minutes. Garnish with pancetta and basil leaves and serve.

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