From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...While this inexpensive casserole was not developed for peckish eaters, if you are feeding a gang or have teenagers at your table, you might want to give this simple recipe a try. You will need a blender and slow cooker to prepare this nearly effortless casserole. The recipe comes from Good Housekeeping magazine, and while it calls for chicken breasts, I actually prefer to use boneless thighs to make this dish. The chipotle chiles give the casserole some heat, but much of it is absorbed by the spaghetti as it cooks, so all but the very young will enjoy it. It is important not to over cook the thin spaghetti. Buy the product actually labeled thin spaghetti to assure proper cooking of the pasta. Avoid capellini at all costs if you decide to make this casserole. It will turn to mush and you will not speak or think kindly of me. If you are looking for an effortless and inexpensive family meal, this Frugal Foodie Friday recipe has you name on it. Here is how the casserole is made.
Southwestern Chicken Spaghetti...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite courtesy of Good Housekeeping magazine
1 can (28-ounce) fire-roasted tomatoes
2 green onions, trimmed and cut into thirds
2 chipotle chiles in adobo sauce
2 tablespoons adobo sauce
2 cloves) garlic, peeled
1 teaspoon sweet smoked paprika
1 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1-1/4 pounds skinless, boneless chicken-breast halves
2 cups chicken broth
1 pound thin spaghetti, broken into thirds
1-1/2 cups finely shredded Monterey Jack cheese
2 green onions, thinly sliced, for garnish
1) Purée tomatoes, onions, chipotles, adobo sauce, garlic, paprika, chili powder, cumin, and 1 teaspoon salt in a blender until smooth.
2) Transfer purée to a 6 to 7-quart slow cooker bowl. Arrange chicken on top (do not submerge). Replace lid and cook on low for 3-1/2 hours or until chicken is cooked.
3) Transfer chicken to a cutting board and allow it to sit until it is cool enough to handle.
4) Meanwhile, combine broth, 1/2 cup water, and 1/4 teaspoon salt in a measuring cup. Microwave on high 1 minute. Add to slow cooker. Add spaghetti, pushing down to fully submerge it. Replace lid and cook, stirring once, for 30 minutes, or until pasta is al dente and most of liquid has been absorbed.
5) While pasta cooks, pull chicken into chunks. Once pasta is cooked, return chicken to bowl, tossing to combine. To serve, top with cheese, sliced green onions, and cilantro. Yield: 8 servings.
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