Monday 24 February 2014

Pasta Arrabbiata with Grilled Spicy Chicken

Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu!

In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful

I'm back this week with another delicious pasta recipe for you. 

This one is made with the spicy Italian pasta sauce called Arrabbiata. It really is just a simple tomato sauce with added heat from red chilli flakes - and you can make it as spicy as you want. 
If you want, you can leave the chicken out because the pasta alone will make a meal in itself. But I kind of love chicken, so I grilled these spicy strips and served them alongside.
P.S. The full written recipe will be at the end of this post :)

A Simple List of Ingredients:

1. Boneless Chicken Strips
2. Garlic Powder
3. Red Chilli Powder
4. Paprika
5. Brown Sugar
6. Salt and Black Pepper
7. Vegetable Oil
8. Garlic
9. Onion
10. Red Chilli Flakes
11. Dried Oregano
12. Tinned Tomatoes
13. Tomato Puree
14. Water
15. Penne Pasta
16. Dried Basil

Bismillah, let's begin!

First, the chicken. Place 1 pound Boneless Chicken Strips into a mixing bowl.

To it, add 1/2 teaspoon Garlic Powder. If you don't have this, leave it out.

1 teaspoon Red Chilli Powder or to taste.

One of my favourite spices - 1 teaspoon Paprika (if you have smoked paprika, add that instead - it'll add a lovely smokiness to the chicken)

A little bit of 1/2 teaspoon Brown Sugar to balance out the spice.

And, of course, Salt and Black Pepper, to taste.

Give the chicken a good stir until it's well coated in all the spices. Leave to marinade for a few hours if you can spare the time. If you're in a rush, cook it straight away.

Now, the pasta sauce. Begin by heating 2 tablespoons Vegetable Oil up in a pan.

To the oil, add 3 Garlic, peeled and finely chopped. Fry for 1 minute until fragrant.

Once the inviting smell of frying garlic has filled your kitchen, thrown in chopped 1 Onion, peeled and diced.

Cook the onions until they have softened.

Next, the ingredient that makes this sauce an Arrabbiata - 1 teaspoon Red Chilli Flakes, or to taste.

Along with 1 teaspoon Dried Oregano.

Cook for a minute or two.

Then, pour in 1 tin (400g) Tomatoes. Use plum or chopped - whatever is in the cupboard. Some passata would work here too.

For a bit of colour, add 1 tablespoon Tomato Puree.

Stir in, and try and break up the tomatoes with the back of your spoon.

Add 100ml Water

Bring to the boil. Cover and simmer on the lowest heat for 20 minutes. Give the sauce a stir in that time, in case it sticks to the bottom.

While the sauce is simmering, there are two jobs for you. First, brush a grill pan with a little oil, and heat it. Cook the chicken strips in a single layer, on both sides, until ..

.. they are charred and cooked through.

The second job, is to cook the pasta. I like to use 300 grams Wholemeal Pasta. It's better than normal pasta, and to be honest, there is no difference in the taste. So, in this recipe, I used Penne.

Cook the penne according to packet instructions in boiling salted water.

After 20 minutes, the sauce should be done.

The final few touches - 1 teaspoon Dried Basil (I had no fresh), Salt and Black Pepper, to taste.

Stir in the seasonings and the sauce is ready to go!

Add in the cooked pasta.

And, give it a good stir.

The Pasta Arrabbiata would be perfect on its own.

But, with the Grilled Spicy Chicken - well, it's 2 for the price of 1 there - and who doesn't love a bargain?

Full Written Recipe:

Pasta Arrabbiata with Grilled Spicy Chicken

(Adapted from Sorted Food)


For the Grilled Spicy Chicken
1 pound Boneless Chicken Strips
½ teaspoon Garlic Powder
1 teaspoon Red Chilli Powder, or to taste
1 teaspoon Paprika
½ teaspoon Brown Sugar
Salt and Black Pepper, to taste

For the Pasta Arrabbiata
2 tablespoons Vegetable Oil
3 Garlic Cloves, peeled and finely chopped
1 Onion, peeled and diced
1 teaspoon Red Chilli Flakes
1 teaspoon Dried Oregano
1 tin (400g) Plum Tomatoes
1 tablespoon Tomato Puree
100ml Water
10 ounces (300 grams) Penne Pasta
1 teaspoon Dried Basil
Salt and Black Pepper, to taste


1.       First, marinate the chicken. Place the chicken strips, garlic powder, red chilli powder, brown sugar, paprika, salt and black pepper into a bowl.

2.       Mix well and set aside to marinate for a few hours (but you can use it straight away as well).

3.       Next, to make the pasta. Heat the vegetable oil in a pan. Add the garlic and fry for 1 minute.

4.       Add the chopped onion, and allow to soften for a few minutes. Then, throw in the red chilli flakes and oregano, and cook for a minute.

5.       Add the plum tomatoes tin, tomato puree and water. Bring to the boil. Reduce the heat to the lowest, cover and simmer for 20 minutes.

6.       Give the sauce a stir in that time too in case it begins to stick to the bottom of the pan.

7.       While the sauce simmers, boil a pan of salted water for the pasta. Cook the pasta according to package instructions.

8.       Brush a grill pan with oil, and grill the chicken on both sides until slightly charred and cooked through.

9.       Once the sauce is cooked, stir through the dried basil, salt and pepper.

10. Add the cooked pasta to the sauce, and stir well.

11. Serve the pasta with a few pieces of chicken, and enjoy!

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