Sunday, 11 June 2017

Roast Chicken Thighs on Conchiglie Pasta in Balsamic Tomato Sauce

Roast chicken thighs on conchiglie pasta in balsamic sauce

Roast chicken is probably not something often associated with being served on pasta but this combination does work very well. The chicken thighs are roasted simply in the oven with some seasoning before being served on a bed of conchiglie pasta in a rich balsamic and tomato sauce. 

Prepared sauce ingredients

Ingredients (Serves 1)

2 whole chicken thighs (skin on)
Salt and black pepper
4 baby plum tomatoes
1/4 red onion, peeled and sliced
1 large garlic clove
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
Generous pinch dried basil
Generous pinch dried oregano
1 cup dried conchiglie pasta shells
Freshly chopped parsley to garnish


Put your oven on to preheat to 200C/400F/Gas Mark 6.

Season the chicken thighs on the under/flesh side with salt and pepper and with salt only on the skin sides. Lay them skin sides up on a lightly oiled roasting tray and place the tray in to the oven for thirty minutes, or thirty-five minutes for especially large thighs. After this time, pierce the thickest part of each thigh with a skewer (or fork) and ensure the juices run clear. If not, return to the oven for five further minutes and test again. Lift to a heated plate, cover with tinfoil and allow to rest for ten minutes.

Combining balsamic sauce ingredients

When the chicken thighs have been in the oven for about fifteen minutes, pour the olive oil and the balsamic vinegar in to a small saucepan. Wash and dry the tomatoes before cutting them in half down through the centre. Add to the saucepan along with the onion slices before grating in the peeled garlic clove. Add the dried herbs and season with salt and pepper. Stir well with a wooden spoon and place the pot on a low heat until the liquid just starts to simmer. Maintain as low a simmer as possible for about fifteen minutes, stirring frequently, until the tomatoes have broken down and a thick sauce is formed.

Drained conchiglie pasta

The pasta will take eight to ten minutes to cook, depending upon how al dente you wish it to be when it is served. It should be added to a large pot of heavily salted, boiling water, stirred briefly and left to cook for the desired period of time. It should then be drained through a colander or sieve and allowed to steam off and dry out for a couple of minutes.

Balsamic pasta sauce

When the sauce is ready, it will have changed colour, be really thick and gooey and the onion strings will be super soft.

Pasta is added to balsamic sauce

Tip the pasta in to the sauce and stir fold very carefully with a wooden spoon, so as not to break up the soft shells.

Pasta in balsamic sauce

Spoon the pasta in to a deep plate and spread out to form a serving bed for the rested chicken thighs.

Chicken thighs are laid on pasta in balsamic sauce

Lay the chicken thighs on top of the pasta and sauce, garnish with the chopped parsley and serve.

Enjoying roast chicken thighs on balsamic pasta sauce