Here in Australia, a lot of businesses close for the period between Christmas and New Year and often even longer, as everyone gets in to Summer holiday mode. Except of course those working in retail who are being swamped by boxing day sales shoppers. I have been doing some work with people in the US and England and it always comes as a bit of a surprise as to how much is open in those countries and how many people are working.
But I am back at work next week and while it will probably be fairly quiet with many of my work colleagues still on leave, I want to use the time to get back in to a routine with my meals. In particular, I have some big plans for this year and want to free up some of my time to focus on those plans. To help with this I am on the hunt for quick meals that reheat well so I only have to cook every other night rather than every night as I have been doing recently. One pot meals are an added bonus. If you have recipes that fit the bill, I would love for you to share them in the comments below or on my facebook page.
This one pot spicy chicken pasta from Steph of Plain Chicken ticks all those boxes. It takes about 5-10 minutes to prepare to cook – mainly getting stuff out of the fridge and pantry and then takes about 30 minutes to cook. It all happens in one pot and the leftovers are just as good the next day. The calorie count is about 515 which is a good dinner for me. The only downside with this dish is that it is not the most beautiful looking once served but as I am just cooking for myself I can live with that.
To make enough for two serves I used the following ingredients:
- 250g of boneless, skinless chicken breast cut into bite sized pieces
- 1 tsp of olive oil
- 2 tsps of dried onion flakes
- 1/2 tsp of garlic powder
- 180ml (3/4 cup) of enchilada sauce
- 140g of tinned black beans, drained and rinsed
- 2 tbs of chicken stock
- 1/3 cup of salsa
- 40ml of thickened cream (heavy cream)
- 80g of spiralli pasta (or penne or any other small pasta you have)
- 1/3 cup of shredded Mexican cheese blend (the one I buy has Queso Quesadilla, Cheddar and Colby Jack – probably not very Mexican but that is was the makers call it)
- 1/2-1 tbs of coriander (cilantro)
I followed the instructions given on the original recipe with one minor change – I added the coriander (cilantro) after melting the cheese. Make sure you use a smaller pan than recommended – so the sauce is not spread out too much. I often find I have to add extra stock when I reduce recipes. I didn’t have to this time around but just in case, keep an eye on things and I would have extra chicken stock on hand just in case.