Friday, July 25, 2008

California Chicken Spaghetti

This dish is super tasty and super simple!

16 ounces uncooked angel hair pasta (I NEVER use that much pasta in it.... you probably don't need to cook that much. I'll tell you more about that later)
3 tablespoons olive oil
4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves - cut into strips
2 tablespoons chopped garlic
2 tablespoons dried basil
(this last time we used fresh basil because there is an abundance of it growing in the back yard... and I ended up adding more than 2 Tablespoons with it fresh)
2 tablespoons Cajun-style blackened seasoning (depending on what brand of seasoning you can end up a little spicy! If you don't want to buy cajun seasoning (or if you don't want it so spicy), go to the bottom of this post for a suggested way to make your own seasoning.
salt and pepper to taste
10 roma (plum) tomatoes, diced

1 zucchini sliced
2/3 cup crumbled feta cheese

Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook for 5 to 8 minutes or until al dente. Drain.

Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add chicken pieces, and cook, stirring until browned on the outside. Stir in the garlic, basil, Cajun seasoning, salt, and pepper, then mix in the tomatoes and zucchini. Cook until tomatoes are semi soft, and chicken is cooked through.

Toss with pasta, and serve with crumbled feta cheese on top. Also top with fresh basil if desired.

Okay, so my suggestion with mixing it with the pasta.... Don't just throw all the noodles in at once because odds are you won't end up with the right sauce to pasta ratio.... What I do, is dump all the sauce into an big pot or big serving bowl, then slowly add in the noodles in batches, mixing after each batch, until it looks like a good sauce to noodle ratio. I don't like there to be so many noodles that you don't get much flavor. The recipe says 16 ounces... I don't think I even use half of that. But, hey, it's up to you

If you want to make your own seasoning, this one works well. It is actually a "creole" seasoning recipe, but it is quite close to cajun and has pretty much the same ingredients in it! So, if you already have these ingredients on hand, you can mix up your own seasoning rather than buying a "Cajun Seasoning" at the store. Just mix it up and keep it in an airtight container. You can use it for all sorts of stuff. This makes quite a bit, so if you don't think you want so much, just half it.

Cajun/Creole Seasoning:

2 1/2 tablespoons paprika
2 tablespoons salt
2 tablespoons garlic powder
1 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon onion powder
1 tablespoon cayenne
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon dried thyme

NOTE: If you want similar flavor without as much heat, make this recipe, but don't use so much cayenne pepper. That's where most of your heat is going to come from.


Hiatt's said...

Jared and I tried out this recipe and really enjoyed it!

Cami said...

my mouth is watering looking at this!! I will try it for sure. YUMMMMMMMM