Wednesday, March 11, 2009

italian baked chicken and pastina

This is a very easy meal to make and does not take long at all! It is especially easy if you have any leftover chicken you can just throw into the onions and garlic as they saute. This meal also has a nice flavor. My husband wasn't a fan of the chunks of tomatoes, but I thought everything tasted good when I made it the other night, and the leftovers were nice to have as well. It is just so easy that it is hard to beat, especially on a night when you just don't have much time! This would also be a very easy meal to make and bring to a friend. Sorry that the picture is not very good!

I found this recipe from My Kitchen Cafe, and it is originally from Giada De Laurentiis.

Italian Baked Chicken and Pastina
from Giada De Laurentiis

I N G R E D I E N T S :

1 cup pastina pasta (or any small pasta -( I used whole wheat elbow macaroni because it is what I had)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 cup cubed chicken breast (1-inch cubes) (I had leftover shredded chicken from a whole chicken I had cooked)
1/2 cup diced onion (about 1/2 a small onion)
1 clove garlic, minced
1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes with juice
1 cup shredded mozzarella
1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup bread crumbs
1/4 cup grated Parmesan
1 tablespoon butter, plus more for buttering the baking dish

D I R E C T I O N S :

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Bring a medium pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the pasta and cook until just tender, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes. Drain pasta into a large mixing bowl.

Meanwhile, put the olive oil in a medium saute pan over medium heat. Add the chicken and cook for 3 minutes. Add the onions and garlic, stirring to combine, and cook until the onions are soft and the chicken is cooked through, about 5 minutes more. Put the chicken mixture into the bowl with the cooked pasta. Add the canned tomatoes, mozzarella cheese, parsley, salt, and pepper. Stir to combine. Place the mixture in a buttered 8 by 8 by 2-inch baking dish. In a small bowl mix together the bread crumbs and the Parmesan cheese. Sprinkle over the top of the pasta mixture. Dot the top with small bits of butter. Bake until the top is golden brown, about 30 minutes.

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