Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Pumpkins & Italian Baked Chicken and Pastina

Can you believe it's almost Halloween? Trader Joes is selling pumpkins and I couldn't resist picking up a few while I was there. Of course I had to get one to represent our baby girl even though she's not here yet. I already feel like we're a family of three even though she still has four months of growing left. I can't wait for next year when she can wear a costume. There's just so many cute ones to choose from.
Do you have any Halloween plans? Do you decorate and bake for the occasion?

Here's a great dinner recipe that's quick and easy; especially for the night you'll be carving pumpkins.

Italian Baked Chicken and Pastina
by Giada De Laurentiis


  • 1 cup pastina pasta (or any small pasta)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 cup cubed chicken breast (1-inch cubes) (I used chicken sausage from Trader Joes)
  • 1/2 cup diced onion (about 1/2 a small onion)
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes with juice
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup bread crumbs
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan
  • 1 tablespoon butter, plus more for buttering the baking dish


Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
Bring a medium pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the pasta and cook until just tender, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes. Drain pasta into a large mixing bowl.
Meanwhile, put the olive oil in a medium saute pan over medium heat. Add the chicken and cook for 3 minutes. Add the onions and garlic, stirring to combine, and cook until the onions are soft and the chicken is cooked through, about 5 minutes more. Put the chicken mixture into the bowl with the cooked pasta. Add the canned tomatoes, mozzarella cheese, parsley, salt, and pepper. Stir to combine. Place the mixture in a buttered 8 by 8 by 2-inch baking dish. In a small bowl mix together the bread crumbs and the Parmesan cheese. Sprinkle over the top of the pasta mixture. Dot the top with small bits of butter. Bake until the top is golden brown, about 30 minutes. 

1 comment:

  1. Looks so yummy! Basically anything that involves tomato sauce makes me hungry ;). Halloween is HUGE in Charleston. We are dressing up and giving out candy to the kids and beer to the adults. We also have a costume parade in our neighborhood