Brothy Chicken and Tortellini w/ a kick (serves 4)

I wanted something on the table in 30 minutes – follow me! And, if the “kick” part scares you,  leave out anything hot that is mentioned. Read recipe first to get your bearings.

Nice one!

Get the following ready: 2 or 3 breasts of chicken sliced thinly, 1 onion (diced) or 1 bunch of scallions (green onions, cut, including green parts), 1 carrot thinly sliced (or not), 3 cloves garlic chopped fine, 1 jalapeno pepper sliced or chopped fine (I always slice a bit of the pepper off and put it to my tongue to test how hot it is. Some can be really mild and some really hot. If it is hot I may decide to add less. I do not remove seeds and veins as it’s too much bother, but you can if you like – it will reduce the heat factor. I like all those little seeds floating around in my bowl!), juice from 1 lime, 1 monster bunch of spinach (washed but no need to dry as it’s going into liquid), OR if spinach just isn’t your thing you could use 1 cup of peas (baby frozen work great and an easy thing to keep on hand in your freezer), 4 cups chicken broth (or water and chicken or veggie bouillon cube if you don’t have broth), more water as needed, a thumb-sized piece of fresh ginger root minced (1 tbs or so & I use the small option on my grater to do the job) cayenne pepper flakes (add as much as you like but start out with 1/8 tsp and go from there). AND,  about 4 cups (1 per person or a little less)of tortellini – I used a six cheese tortellini that I keep frozen in the fridge (no, not fresh stuff that I laboriously made and froze!). sometimes I use a tri-color variety or even a ravioli. I buy it from the fridge section of the supermarket (or I suppose you could buy frozen tortellini?) and  then I freeze it for times like this – very handy item indeed.

Thawing tortellini

ready to season!

OK – time to put your big saute pan on the stove-top on medium heat. If you are stuck for the right pan, you could probably get away with a 3 or 4 qt sauce/soup pot? Don’t get too worried about the pot. Just use a little logic( 4 to 6 cups liquid with chicken and vegetables, hmmmmm? grab a pot or pan!). Add some olive oil (extra virgin is fine too) to your pan (2 tbs) and give it a minute to warm. Add the onions or scallions and garlic and let soften for 3 or so minutes. Add the jalapeno & carrots and give another stir. Season with some salt, pepper and the cayenne flakes. Add broth, lime juice and ginger, stir and let the pot come to a simmer. Cover and simmer for about 4 minutes. Add chicken and cook for a further 5 minutes and then tip in tortellini and peas (if using). If you want more liquid add it now –  sometimes I want it to be soupier. Cover and cook for about 3 minutes and then keep testing pasta (by tasting) until it’s to your liking. It only takes 3 or 4 minutes to cook so don’t forget about it. Pull off heat and add spinach. Let it wilt for a couple of minutes before ladling into shallow bowls. I like to top with some more pepper flakes or even a dollop of chili garlic sauce (gets the nose dripping!). Also, some chopped cilantro gives it something special in the flavor department. A happy meal!

3 responses to “Brothy Chicken and Tortellini w/ a kick (serves 4)

  1. I am sick and I’m going to make this today…. I’ll let you know how it turned out. Question – Do you think that this dish would be good with prawns instead of chicken? And, would leek be a good substitute for the scallions?

  2. An onion or 2 leeks (white parts and a little of the green – until it starts to splay out) would be great. Chop leeks fine. Prawns??.. don’t see why not. If your pasta cooks in 3 minutes (look on package) the prawns can be added at the same time. Your pot of liquid will be much more brothy but that should be good for your ailments. You could also increase the garlic and cayenne pepper flake for a more restorative soup!
    Get well soon
    Tess x

  3. Simon cooked this for out dinner last night and it was perfect! Thank you Tess!

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