A simplified version of a nineteenth-century stew that originated in Virginia and included squirrel. Today, diced cooked potatoes are sometimes added.
Heat oil in heavy large skillet over high heat. Season chicken with salt and pepper. Add chicken to skillet and sauté until brown, turning occasionally, about 15 minutes. Transfer chicken to plate. Pour off all but 2 tablespoons fat from skillet. Add onion, bell pepper and garlic and sauté until tender, about 5 minutes. Return chicken to skillet. Add tomatoes, corn, lima beans and thyme. Bring mixture to simmer. Reduce heat to medium, cover and simmer until chicken is tender, about 30 minutes. Transfer chicken to platter; tent with foil to keep warm. Boil liquid until reduced to sauce consistency, stirring occasionally, about 8 minutes. Season sauce with salt and pepper. Spoon sauce over chicken.