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A big bowl of spaghetti and meat sauce is one of my all-time favorite meals, and like most cooks, I make it a little different every time. The veggies change seasonally, and as far as the meat goes, sometimes it’s beef, or pork, or a combination, but for whatever reason, chicken is rarely considered. It’s usually only when I’m using up leftovers that I think to toss it with noodles. So, I almost forget how great this is when you dedicate a whole bird, and a few hours to the effort.


Other than requiring a little time, this recipe is dead simple, with the only major decision being how thick to make your sauce. I like something fairly light, I guess because it’s chicken, but if you do want something thicker, simply change the ratio of sauce to water when you start the recipe. You can also reduce it longer, but you knew that.

Just be sure to undercook your pasta by at least a minute here, since as you saw we’re going to finish it in hot sauce for a couple minutes at the end. This is a critical step, and allows all those flavors to get sucked up by the still hydrating spaghetti. This is also a great make-ahead meal, as you can prep your sauce one day, and then assemble the finished dish at a later date. Either way, I really do hope you give this chicken spaghetti a try soon. Enjoy!


Ingredients for enough Chicken Spaghetti Sauce for between 1 and 1.5 pounds of pasta, depending on how “saucy” you want it:
1 large whole chicken (4 1/2 to 5 pounds), with bag inside cavity removed
1 jar (24-oz) marinara sauce (about 3 cups)
6 cups water or chicken broth
2 anchovy fillets
2 teaspoons salt, plus more to taste
red chili flakes to taste

To finish the dish, for each person:
4 ounces spaghetti, cooked, drained (not rinsed!)
enough chicken spaghetti sauce and to please you
more grated cheese
1 tablespoon cold butter
1/4 cup thinly sliced basil leaves
salt and hot pepper to taste
at least 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano or Pecorino cheese

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