Penne Pasta Bake With Rotiserie Chicken And Condensed Mushroom Soup Recipe

Every now and then, I would go through my provisions and make a dish out of the selected ones ahead of their “best use before” dates. The condensed soup has been sitting in my cupboard for ages. It is time for it to come out of the closet. Pictured below were other ingredients I had so I decided to cook something both kids and adults can appreciate, Pasta Bake!

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Penne Pasta Bake Ingredients.

Penne Pasta Bake Recipe
(serves 4)
Ingredients:
1 small rotisserie Chicken, debone and shred coarsely (or 2 cups cooked chicken breasts/turkey).

250g Penne (uncooked, dried) or any shell/spiral/tubular pasta.
3.5 litres Water.
1 tablespoon Salt.
Reserve *2 cups of the cooked pasta water for use later.

Seasonings:
1 can Condensed Mushroom Soup (simmered with ½ cup milk and let cool).
1 cup Swiss Cheese, shredded (or ¾ Swiss and¼ cup Mozzarella).
1 cup Sharp Cheddar, shredded.
½ teaspoon dried or ½ tablespoon fresh Oregano, optional.
½ – 1 teaspoon Smoked Paprika, or to taste.
Freshly milled Black Pepper, to taste.
1½ teaspoon Worcestershire Sauce.
1 teaspoon Tabasco.
The last two are optional but they balance the richness of cheeses.
*1 cup or more Pasta Water.

Note:
• substitute 2 cups with any of your favourite cheese(s) for the cheese-blend mentioned above.

• substitute chicken with seafood or completely omit any “meats”, for just pasta and cheese bake.

• use milk instead of pasta water.

Toppings:
1½ cup Panko (or breadcrumbs).
½ cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano Cheese.
Mix the above ingredients together.
1 tablespoon Olive Oil.

Optional Vegetables:
1 cup fresh Button or Shiitake Mushrooms.
1 small Onion, diced.
1½ cup fresh Baby Spinach.
¼ cup Red Bell Pepper (Capsicum).
¼ cup Green Bell Pepper.

Add 1 teaspoon olive oil to a hot pan and sauté mushrooms, onion and bell pepper for 3 minutes or until tender. Add spinach, oregano (from seasonings), and sauté a further 3 minutes or just until spinach wilts.

Method:
Preheat oven to 200°C (400°F).

Bring 3 litres of water and one tablespoon salt in a stockpot to a fast boil and put in the penne. Time 10 minutes (or according to the package’s instructions) ONLY when the water comes back to a fast boil. Reserve 2 cups of the cooking pasta water and drain the rest away.

Put the shredded chicken and seasoning ingredients (and optional vegetables) into a big mixing bowl.

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When pasta is ready, use a slotted spoon and scoop the pasta into the mixing bowl with the seasoned shredded chicken. Pour in 1 cup of reserved pasta water, stir and add more water/milk if deemed necessary. Mix to combine well.

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The mixture should be very moist and gravy-like but not soupy.

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Sprinkle evenly with Panko-Parmigiano toppings. Drizzle one tablespoon of olive oil across the toppings.

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Bake on middle rack for 25 minutes or until the pasta bubbles and the toppings turned golden and crisp.

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Dig in and enjoy!

Happy cooking, eating and bonding! 🙂

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