Cooking On A Budget: Chicken and Cavatelli

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Chicken and Cavatelli


It is the season for warm and comforting one pot meals. This Chicken and Cavatelli dish gives me good reason to use my cast iron dutch oven I received as a gift for Christmas.
The flavor and color of this dish is wonderful. You get a peppery background along with the flavor of the turmeric and thyme. I loved this dish. The cavatelli is soft and light and just wonderful. I found a wonderful frozen home made cavatelli which cooks quickly because it is home made. So when you add it to the dish it cooks quickly. The other thing about this dish is that it is filling. You don't need a lot to feel satisfied, warm and full.
The cavatelli was on sale for $1.00 per bag. I'm definitely going to buy more and put it my freezer. This whole dinner costs $9.75. Feeds four people comfortably at $2.43 per portion. 

  • 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts - cut into cubes
  • 1/2 of a 13 oz. bag of frozen cavatelli  (The brand I used is Gina Italian Village Home Made Pasta.)
  • 20 oz. chicken broth or stock
  • 1 tbsp. shortening
  • salt to taste
  • black pepper to taste
  • granulated garlic to taste
  • onion powder to taste
  • 1 tbsp. dried parsley flakes
  • 1 tsp. turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp. white pepper
  • 1/8 tsp. dried thyme
  • 1 onion - large pieces
  • 4 small stalks celery - medium pieces
  • 2-3 carrots - cut on the bias
  • 1-2 tbsp. flour

  1. In a dutch oven or deep skillet over medium heat melt the shortening.
  2. Season your chicken pieces with salt, black pepper, granulated garlic and onion powder to taste.
  3. Add the chicken to the pan and quickly sear each side for about a minute or so, then remove to a waiting bowl or plate.
  4. Add in the onion and celery and cook over medium low heat. Add some salt and sweat the vegetables for about 4-5 minutes. Then sprinkle in the flour and stir. Cook and stir until the flour taste cooks out, scrapping the bottom of the pan while you go. This takes 3-4 minutes.
  5. Slowly add in the chicken stock, stirring. To the pot add in the turmeric, white pepper, parsley flakes and dried thyme. Mix well.
  6. Add the seared chicken back to the pan along with the carrots. Stir and lid the pot. Simmer for about 45 minutes covered.
  7. Add in the pasta and cook for about 3-4 minutes on a simmer and the cavatelli should be ready. Home made pasta cooks much faster than dried pasta and what a difference in taste!
  8. If you want this dish a little thicker you could do a cornstarch and water slurry and bring it to a boil and thicken it BEFORE you add in the pasta.
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