Food | #ICook | Chicken Tetrazzini

I've had Jamie Oliver's Jamie's Italy cook book for years and all I've been doing with it was just admiring the photos of the gorgeous foods he made with Italian mammas haha .. but for the first time ever I actually used it to make this pasta tetrazzini recipe few nights ago; yeayyy finally! ^^

To my surprise, I found out that pasta tetrazzini did not originate from Italy; it was invented in America circa 1900  and named after the person it was created for; Luisa Tetrazzini an opera star. 

Basically, pasta tetrazzini is made using long, thin pasta; poultry, mushroom and cream.

In Jamie's version, he used spaghetti, white wine, porcini mushrooms and fresh basil but as always, there are stuffs that I simply want to change up a bit / couldn't find / too expensive and of course being a Muslim I always have to leave out/ substitute the alcohol with something, so here's my version of chicken tetrazzini..

I used:
Half a pack of dried penne pasta 
2 chicken thighs; skinned, boned and cut to bite-size pieces
1 cup dried shitake mushrooms flakes 
2 cloves of garlic; finely chopped
1 cup whipping cream
1 tbsp sunflower oil
Dried Italian mixed herbs
Salt and crushed black pepper to taste
1 cup grated parmesan for baking and serving

I used penne instead of spaghetti simply because I've been using the latter several times recently so just wanted something different; 

the mushrooms - Jamie also used mixed fresh mushrooms which I did buy but didn't use any of them coz I thought I used too much of the dried ones already. Now that I'm blogging about it and reviewing the cook book once again, I'm like wth was I thinking?? :P

.. and for the herbs, Jamie used fresh basil but I had to settle for the dried herbs that I already have at home instead because the fresh ones were not available. T_T

This is how I deboned the thighs;

Slit the knife around the bone where the meat is thinner until the meat is cut to the bone, do the same thing but this time on the vertical from the first cut you made down to the bottom where the meat is thick, and finally using your knife, push the meat down until you could cut them off from the bone just like in the photo above. 

For the record, I somehow accidentally saw this on  the Korean cooking program Home Food Rescue Ep8 on Channel M just a couple of days prior to this hehe.  So if my explanation is bad, simply google 'deboning chicken leg' =D

Cooking it:
1. Preheat the oven at 200C.

2. Boil some water to cook the dried pasta according to the packet instructions.

3. Soak the dried mushrooms in hot water, leave on the side.

Boiled penne and soaked mushrooms

4. Season the cut chicken thighs with salt and pepper.

5. Heat the oil in a pan and brown the chicken gently. 

6. Drain the soaked mushrooms ( keep the soaking water) and add them into the pan along with the garlic and some dried herbs (and supposedly the fresh mushrooms). Stir for a while.

7. Add the soaking water into the pan, turn down the heat and leave to simmer gently until the chicken is cooked through.

8. Add the cream, stir and leave to simmer gently then turn off the heat.

The cream bubbling away

9. Add in the cooked pasta, season with salt, black pepper, more herbs and toss.

10. Transfer to an oven-proof baking dish. Sprinkle half of the grated parmesan into the pasta and toss; sprinkle the other half on top.

11. Bake in the oven until golden and crispy.

This recipe serves a good 4 pax. 

It took me roughly just a little over an hour to prepare this from scratch including cleaning my work station hehe, so like many other pasta dishes this one is actually pretty simple to make and yummy!

I'll make this again soon using dried and fresh mushrooms as well as spaghetti for crispier pasta bake ^^

Happy cooking! 


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