By: Jeannie Mai & Paul Hong
What you need: a box of pasta, a jar of marinara sauce, chicken breast (optional), two pots, one pan, salt, garlic seasoning (optional).
With an overwhelming amount of homework, hours of after school practices and rehearsals, most of us don’t have time to cook our own meals. If it weren’t for mother dearest, I don’t know where we’d all be. Thankfully, most meals aren’t as complex as they look. In a few short steps, Paul and I are going to show you how easy it is to whip up a meal. If we can do it, anyone can!
For our first month, we decided to keep it simple. For someone home alone with nothing to eat, and no mother to cook anything, we figured it doesn’t get much easier than pasta with red sauce and chicken.
For this meal, we used Barilla’s penne pasta, which can be purchased at a local market for only $1.79. We bought a jar of premade Ragu sautéed onion and garlic marinara sauce, which usually goes for about $3-4. This part is optional, but we wanted meat in our pasta, so we also purchased chicken breast, which ranges anywhere from $2-3 per pound.
Step 1: Turn your oven up to full heat and boil water in a small to medium sized pot for about 9-10 minutes. Pour pasta in and wait for the shells to soften.
Step 2: While the water is boiling, warm up your marinara sauce. Simply pour the sauce into the other pot and wait as it heats up.
Step 3: While everything is heating up, defrost your chicken. We microwaved our chicken breast for about one minute.
Step 4: Once the pasta is finished, drain the water and leave the pasta off to the side. While you’re waiting for the sauce to heat up, you can cut up your chicken into thin slices, cubes, or however you like it.
Step 5: Immediately, you should be ready to fry the chicken. Take the pan out and pour oil onto it. Place the slices/cubes of chicken side to side and let the chicken cook. We decided to add a little garlic seasoning (Kirkland Signature granulated California Garlic, $7.49) and salt for a little extra flavor. Occasionally flip the pieces over, and take them out of the pan once they’re a nice golden brown. Careful not to burn it!
Step 6: Your sauce should be long finished. Pour your marinara sauce onto the pasta, and toss in the chicken. Mix it all together and voilà! Your meal is complete! Sit back and enjoy your easy, yet delicious masterpiece!
Warning: Please be extremely careful when handling sharp kitchen utensils and remember to never leave the oven on longer than necessary.