Cooking Tips & Hints
                  Week 70 Featured Recipe
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(click for printable version of this recipe)
The spicier version of this recipe is so popular in Utica, New York, that they have a festival for it each year. Local restaurants compete to see who is the "fan favorite".
• Cutting Board
• Large Pot
• Dutch Oven
• Knife
• Wooden Spoon
• Chopper
• Garlic mincer

• 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts,
  cut into 1" pieces
• 1/4 cup jarred, cherry peppers,
  seeded, chopped fine
• 3 tbsp cherry pepper brine
• 3 tbsp olive oil
• salt & pepper
• 10 oz mushrooms, quartered
• 2 red bell peppers, seeded and cut
  into 1" pieces
• 1 onion, cut into 1" pieces
• 5 garlic cloves, minced
• 1½ tsp dried oregano
• 1 28oz can crushed tomatoes
• 3/4 cup heavy cream
• 3/4 cup pitted kalamata olives, halved
• 1 pound rigatoni
• 1 1/4 cups grated Romano cheese


PREPARATION: Marinate chicken by combing chicken , 2 tbsp cherry brine, 1 tbsp oil and 1 tsp salt in zipper-lock bag and refrigerate 30 minutes or up to an hour. Make sauce by heating 1 tbsp oil in Dutch oven over medium-high heat until shimmering. Stir in mushrooms, bell peppers and ½ tsp salt. Cook until browned, about 8 minutes. Transfer veggies to medium bowl; set aside. Add onion and remaining oil to the now-empty pot and cook over medium heat until softened, appx 5 minutes. Stir in cherry peppers, garlic and oregano. Cook until fragrant, appx 30 seconds. Add tomatoes, cream and ½ tsp pepper and bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium and simmer, stirring occasionally, until sauce is very thick, 10 to 15 minutes. Stir in chicken and reserved vegetables and simmer, covered until chicken is cooked through, appx 6 to 8 minutes. Add the olives and remaining cherry pepper brine. Cover and keep warm.

Meanwhile, bring 4 quarts of water to a boil in a large pot. Add 1 tbsp salt & the rigatoni. Cook al dente according to package instructions. Drain pasta, reserving the liquid, and add to the sauce along with the Romano. Toss to combine adding reserved pasta water as needed. Serve.

HINTS: For a spicier dish, use hot cherry peppers in place of the regular ones. Next week’s recipe will be a side dish of greens that goes well with this pasta dish and uses the cherry peppers and Romano cheese.