Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Mexican-Style Pasta With Chicken and Peppers

A delicious, easy and healthy meal, you're going to love it!

4 cups low sodium chicken broth
2 minced garlic cloves
1 tablespoon cumin
1 tablespoon chili powder
2 tablespoons sugar
4 plum tomatoes, well drained or 6 whole canned tomatoes, well drained
3 scallions
1 large green bell pepper
3/4 lb vermicelli or other thin pasta (I used bowtie pasta)
1/2 lb boneless skinless chicken breast
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 (4 ounce) can chopped mild green chilies, drained
1/4 teaspoon salt (omit if using regular chicken broth)
1/4 cup fresh cilantro

* I added red pepper flakes to taste, stirred in a 1/2 cup light sour cream just before removing from heat and then topped with some shreaded pepper-jack cheese to individual servings.

1 In a medium saucepan, bring the chicken broth, garlic, cumin and chili powder to a boil over medium-high heat.
2 Meanwhile, coarsely chop the tomatoes, scallions and bell pepper. Break the vermicelli into 2-inch pieces.
3 Add the chicken to the boiling broth, reduce the heat to medium-low, cover and simmer until the chicken is cooked through, about 10 minutes. Remove the chicken and set it aside to cool slightly.
4 In a large nonstick skillet, warm the oil over medium-high heat until hot but not smoking. Add the vermicelli and cook, stirring, until the vermicelli is lightly browned, about 2 minutes. (I omitted this step; I began to cook the pasta, then finished cooking in broth mixture with veges.
5 Add the broth mixture, tomatoes, scallions, bell pepper, green chilies and salt, and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the pasta is cooked, about 7 minutes.
6 Meanwhile, shred the chicken. Mince the cilantro (if using).
7 Stir the shredded chicken and cilantro into the pasta mixture and serve hot.

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