Thursday, July 23, 2009

Italian Baked Chicken and Pastina

I've been on a pasta kick. Can't say I didn't warn you that I really am addicted to pasta. I promise some non-pasta posts in the near future.

While the dish is not very photogenic, it is very, very good. The smell of it is reason enough to make it. Brian ate almost every bit of it and said it was one of the best things I've ever made.

If you can't find shallots in your store, just use a small onion. I like shallots because they pretty much melt while you cook them and I absolutely hate biting on a huge chunk of onion. However, use whatever you like. Also, for ease, I used the chicken breasts from a store-bought rotisserie chicken, which I think added a nice flavor to the dish.

Italian Baked Chicken and Pastina
Adapted from Giada

1 cup pastina pasta (or any small pasta) - I used Mini Bow-Tie Pasta
2 tablespoons olive oil, plus one tablespoon (divided)
1 cup cubed chicken breast from rotisserie chicken (1-inch cubes)
1 shallot, diced (or 1 small onion)
1 clove garlic, minced
1 (14.5-ounce) can Italian seasoned diced tomatoes with juice
1 1/2 cup shredded mozzarella
1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1/4 cup chopped basil
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup bread crumbs
1/4 cup grated Parmesan
1 tablespoon olive oil or butter

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 shallot and garlic, stirring to combine, and cook until the shallot is soft. Put the chicken, onions and garlic into the bowl with the cooked pasta. Add the canned tomatoes, mozzarella cheese, parsley, basil, 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. Stir in 1 tablespoon of olive oil with the breadcrumb/cheese mixture until combined. Sprinkle over the top of the pasta mixture. Bake until the top is golden brown, about 20 minutes.


Emily said...

mmmmmm that looks very yummy!

Jennifer and Kevin said...

I've made this before, and we love it!

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