Prep 30 mins
Cook 20 mins
From Rachael Ray
- coarse salt
- 1 lb penne rigate or 1 lb cavatappi pasta
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 4 boneless skinless chicken breast halves, cut into bite-size pieces (6 oz. each)
- 1 tablespoon ground cumin
- 1 tablespoon ground coriander
- 2 tablespoons chili powder
- coarse black pepper
- 1 large yellow onion, chopped
- 3 garlic cloves, chopped
- 1 jalapeno, seeded and chopped
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 2 cups milk
- 3⁄4 lb sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
- 1⁄4 cup fresh cilantro leaves, chopped
- 1⁄2 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped
- Preheat the broiler to high and position the rack 8 inches from the heat.
- Bring a large pot of water to boil; salt the boiling water and cook the pasta until slightly undercooked—a little chewy at the center.
- While the water is coming to a boil, preheat a large skillet over med-high heat with the vegetable oil.
- Season the chicken with cumin, coriander, chili powder, salt, and pepper; add the seasoned chicken to the hot skillet and cook 4-5 minutes or until lightly browned.
- Add in the onions, garlic, and jalapeno peppers; continue to cook 5 minutes.
- While the chicken is cooking with the onions, make the cheddar sauce.
- In a medium saucepan, melt the butter and add the flour to it.
- Cook 1-2 minutes over medium heat, then whisk in the milk.
- When the milk comes to a bubble, stir in the cheese, cilantro, and parsley with a wooden spoon.
- Season with a little salt and pepper; remove cheese sauce from heat.
- Once the pasta is cooked, drain it and add back into the large pot.
- Add in the contents of the chicken skillet and all the cheddar sauce; stir to combine.
- Transfer mixture to a baking dish and place under the broiler to lightly brown.