October 22, 2014

One-pot tomato, basil, and chicken pasta

2 minutes
Cultural exchange

Amy Donovan is one of those “super moms” that we all admire so much. Not only is she she a busy mom and a local childcare consultant for Cultural Care Au Pair, she is a food lover, entertaining enthusiast and crafty DIYer! Amy has agreed to share some of her favorite recipes with the Cultural Care Au Pair community—recipes that are kid-friendly, easy-to-prepare and, of course, super healthy. Check out her website—Fearless Homemaker—for more delicious recipes and gorgeous photos of the end results! 
I love pasta for family dinners, and I especially love a pasta meal that’s as quick and easy to make as it is delicious. In this one-pot recipe, rather than boil the pasta separately, you cook it in the pot with the broth, chicken, tomatoes, + herbs. Cooking it this way imparts a ton of flavor into the pasta, as it gets to absorb all sorts of deliciousness. With tender chicken, perfectly-cooked pasta, and a creamy, subtly-herbed tomato sauce, this meal is one that will win over both the adults AND the children in the household. It’s flavorful and complex enough to appeal to an adult, but mild enough that even the littlest diner (like my toddler) will gobble it up. And since it’s all cooked in one pot (and takes less than 20 minutes total), it’s perfect for a quick, easy-to-clean-up weeknight family meal!

One-Pot Tomato, Basil + Chicken Pasta
serves 6-8, adapted from Martha Stewart Living
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, separated
1 large onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
12 ounces pasta (I used bowties)
1 can (15 ounces) Hunt’s Diced Tomatoes with Basil, Garlic + Oregano (or a comparable brand of italian-seasoned diced tomatoes)
1 can (15 ounces) crushed tomatoes
2 cups shredded cooked chicken (omit to make a vegetarian dish)
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes (or 1/4 teaspoon if you want a less-spicy dish)
2 teaspoons dried italian seasoning
1/2 cup fresh basil, chopped
2 1/2 cups low-sodium chicken broth (substitute vegetable broth to make vegetarian)
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon kosher salt
Parmesan cheese, for serving

Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large stock pot over medium heat. Once hot, add the chopped onions + cook until onions are translucent + softened, about 7 minutes. Add the garlic + cook for 1 minute more, until fragrant.
Add the remaining ingredients to the stock pot – the pasta, diced tomatoes with their liquid, crushed tomatoes, shredded chicken, red pepper flakes, italian seasoning, fresh basil, chicken broth, remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil, salt + pepper. Stir everything together until well combined.
Bring to a boil. Cover, reduce to a simmer + cook for 10-15 minutes (depending on the type of pasta you choose), stirring frequently. Cook until almost all the liquid has evaporated + pasta has reached an al dente consistency. Add more salt + pepper if needed + stir well. Serve with a generous topping of freshly grated Parmesan cheese + enjoy!