Chef John's Chicken Spaghetti
Place chicken in a pot and pour marinara sauce on top. Add water and anchovies. Bring to a simmer, uncovered, over high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low. Cover and simmer, without stirring, for 1 hour and 15 minutes.Advertisement
Transfer chicken to a bowl using tongs. Let cool to the touch.
Meanwhile, bring sauce to a simmer over medium-high heat. Cook, skimming off the fat from the surface, until sauce is reduced by at least half, 20 to 35 minutes.
Tear off chicken meat by hand and transfer to a bowl, breaking the pieces into your desired size.
Add the chicken, red pepper flakes, and salt to the reduced sauce. Cook and stir until chicken is heated through, about 2 minutes. Keep on low heat while you cook the pasta.
Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Cook spaghetti in the boiling water according to package instructions, reducing time by 1 minute, about 11 minutes. Drain and return to the pot; reduce heat to low.
Add the chicken sauce and Pecorino Romano to the pasta. Sprinkle in basil and add butter. Stir until butter melts, about 1 minute. Turn off the heat and add remaining Pecorino Romano cheese. Cover and let sit for 1 minute. Stir and serve.
I cook only 4 ounces, or 1 portion, of pasta in the video, but this recipe makes enough sauce for 1 to 1 1/2 pounds of pasta.
If you want a thicker sauce, simply change the ratio of sauce to water when you start the recipe. You can also reduce it longer, but you knew that.
You can substitute chicken broth for the water and Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese for the Pecorino Romano.
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.