Cavatelli with Chicken & Tomato
- 2 Tbs. unsalted butter
- 3 Tbs. olive oil
- 3 lb. chicken thighs and drumsticks
- 1/2 lb. chicken livers, cleaned, trimmed of fat
and coarsely chopped (optional)
- 1 small yellow onion, finely chopped
- 1 carrot, finely chopped
- 1 celery stalk, finely chopped
- 2 bay leaves
- 1/4 lb. cremini or button mushrooms, quartered
and thinly sliced
- 2 1/2 cups canned crushed plum tomatoes with
- Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
- 1 lb. cavatelli, fusilli or other medium-size pasta
In a large fry pan over medium-high heat, melt the butter with 1 Tbs. of the olive oil. Working in batches, add the chicken to the pan and cook, turning once, until brown on both sides, about 10 minutes total per batch. Transfer to a platter.
In the same pan, warm 1 Tbs. of the oil. Add the chicken livers and cook, stirring frequently, until browned, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a plate.
Make the sauce
Return the pan to medium heat and warm the remaining 1 Tbs. oil. Add the onion, carrot, celery and bay leaves and sauté until the vegetables are softened and slightly browned, about 7 minutes. Add the mushrooms and sauté until they have released some of their liquid, about 3 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes. Add the chicken along with the livers and any accumulated juices. Reduce the heat to low and simmer, partially covered, until the chicken is opaque throughout, about 30 minutes. Remove the bay leaves and discard. Season with salt and pepper.
Cook the pasta
Meanwhile, bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat. Add 2 Tbs. salt and the pasta. Cook, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking, until al dente, according to the package instructions. Drain the pasta and divide among individual bowls. Top with the sauce and chicken pieces and serve immediately. Serves 6.
Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Food Made Fast Series, Pasta, by Julia della Croce (Oxmoor House, 2006).