Thursday, October 11, 2012

Fiesta Baked Spaghetti

I love comfort food.  And this is definitely comfort food.

Creamy Mexican-inspired spaghetti casserole.

Basically you're going to cook a chicken

Cook the spaghetti in the chicken stock

and then combine the chicken, spaghetti and all of these things together:

Oh, and you'll need some cheese.  Because this is comfort food, after all.

This is so creamy and flavorful.  The Rotel gives a bit of spice, and the cheese and sour cream makes it super creamy.

It really is delicious.  And comforting.

I love casseroles.

Fiesta Baked Spaghetti
Inspired by Pioneer Woman

1 whole chicken (about 4 lbs)
1 T salt
2 tsp pepper
1 lb. angel hair pasta
2 10 oz. cans cream of chicken soup
1 cup sour cream
4 oz. jar diced pimentoes, not drained
4 oz. can chopped green chiles, not drained
10 oz. can Rotel, not drained
8 oz. shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1 onion, finely chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 T cumin
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
8 oz. shredded Mexican blend cheese

Place the chicken in a large pot and fill with water until the chicken is just covered.  Season with the tablespoon of salt and 2 teaspoons of pepper.  Bring to a boil and simmer until the chicken is cooked and falling off the bone (about 1 hour).  Remove the chicken and set aside to cool.  (You can skip this step if you substitute the meat from a rotisserie chicken.  Just cook the pasta in salted boiling water if you substitute a rotisserie chicken for the whole uncooked chicken.)

Bring the chicken cooking water to a boil and drop in the angel hair.  Cook until just tender.  Drain the pasta and return it to the pan.

Add the remaining ingredients except the Mexican blend cheese to the pot with the pasta.  Shred the chicken meat and add it to the pot.  Combine everything to make sure all the pasta is coated and the ingredients are evenly distributed.

Spray a 10x15 casserole dish OR two 8x8 casserole dishes with nonstick cooking spray.  Spread the spaghetti evenly in the pan(s).  Top with Mexican blend cheese.  Bake in a 350 degree oven for about 45 minutes, until hot and bubbly and cheese is melted.

This freezes well.  Wrap tightly and place the freezer.  When you are ready to bake, thaw it completely and bake as directed.

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