Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Chicken, Chorizo, Spinach, Mushroom & Broccoli Pasta Bake

This is my take on Mac & Cheese (with a few extra ingredients!)
A one dish dinner for the whole family - nutritious enough for the 14 month old toddler and tasty enough for the hubby. Even my fussiest eater (Miss 6) liked it (I suspect it was the bacon topping that did it!). 
Out of all my Thermomix creations this is by far my family's favourite (if measured by how quickly it was demolished) and it even has half a kilo of vegetables in it! The added bonus (and to the relief of hubby) is that there is hardly any washing up. 

Ingredients - Topping
3 slices wholemeal bread
100g bacon
1/2 tsp paprika
15g olive oil

Ingredients - Filling
200g cheddar or mozzarella cheese
1 clove garlic, peeled
1 onion, peeled and halved
20g olive oil
150g mushrooms
1/2 tstp freshly ground black pepper
400g milk
400g stock or 400g water + 1 tbsp of vegetable stock concentrate (EDC page 17)
200g dry pasta (spirals, elbows, macaroni or penne)
200g broccoli, cut into small florets
250g chicken thigh or breast, sliced thinly
1 chorizo sausage (approx 100g), cut in half lengthwise and sliced thinly
100g spinach, roughly chopped

Method
If using the oven for the final step, preheat oven to 200C.
1. If your cheese isn't grated, chop it into 2-3cm cubes, place in TM bowl and grate for 7 seconds on speed 8. Set aside.
2. Place all topping ingredients in TM bowl and chop for 4 seconds on speed 6. Set aside.
3. Place garlic and onion in TM bowl. Chop for 3 seconds on speed 7. Scrape down sides. 
4. Add olive oil and saute for 3 minutes at Varoma temperature on speed 1.
5. Add mushrooms. Chop for 4 seconds on speed 4.
6. Add pepper, milk and stock. Cook for 8 minutes at 100C on reverse speed soft.
7. Add pasta and broccoli. Cook for 6 minutes at 100C on reverse speed soft.
8. Add chicken, chorizo and spinach. Cook for 3 minutes at 100C on reverse speed soft. Use spatula at the start to help incorporate and stir the meat and spinach into the sauce.
9. Place mixture into oven proof baking dish. Spread the top evenly with grated cheese and then the bacon/breadcrumb topping.
10. Place into preheated oven for 20 minutes until topping is golden and crispy, or place under a hot grill for 4 minutes (but keep an eye on it as can get burnt quite quickly!)


Variations: 
1) Eat it as a pasta dish without the cheese and topping. If so, at step 8 cook for a further 2 minutes until pasta is tender. 
2) Eat it without the topping and just melt the cheese over the top. 
3) Already have leftover cooked or roast chicken and/or steamed veg? Just add them in at the last step for 1 minute to warm through before putting in the baking dish. 

Substitutes: Try using cauliflower or pumpkin instead of broccoli; or ham or salami (or more bacon!) for the chorizo. 

11 comments:

  1. My whole family loved this dish, although I found it a little salty. Might hold back on the stock next time. I was asked to put it on the favourites list. Thanks.

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  2. Please can you specify if the chicken you add is raw or pre cooked

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    1. Hi there. I used raw chicken. If you want to use pre-cooked chicken have a look at my instructions at "Variation (3)".

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  3. Replies
    1. No you don't need to as it will cook in the oven / under the grill (depending on which method in 10 you use.

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  4. Could you please tell me how many adult sized portions this makes? Thanking you. It looks delish :)

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  5. Hi Julie. Thanks for stopping by. I think about 4 large portions. The dish in the background of the photo is 30cm x 20cm.

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  6. Made this for dinner last night and it was SENSATIONAL! Thank you.
    Substituted pumpkin for the mushrooms (as have an abundance from the garden) and used leftover BBQ. Easily serves 6.

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  7. OMG this is amazing! Mr 4 wasn't a fan, but my fussy Miss 7 ate it, you can't please everyone. Thank you, will be making this again.

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  8. Made this last night for the first time! Used cauliflower and left out the chorizo as I'm not a fan. Loved it!

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