Thursday, February 13, 2014
Cajun chicken and pepper pasta
I threw this pasta dish together on a whim and it turned out to be a keeper that we will be having again (and again). I was able to incorporate a few herbs I dried last fall from our herb garden. It was really delicious - spicy, but not too hot, creamy, and a touch sweet from the peppers and onions. It was good for a cold night which is what we are having a lot of lately. I do like winter and snow, but the cold is starting to get to me this year. It didn't help that my work office is freezing cold (though I did receive a space heater this week, and I'm super happy and thankful for that). I'm hoping that this weekend we can get a snow shoe in since we should still have snow and it shouldn't be in the negative temperatures! This pasta dish would be nice to make after spending some time outside because the spice will help to warm you up from the inside out! This dish should feed 4-6 people.
Cajun chicken & pepper pasta
1 lb. penne or other pasta of your choice
1 tablespoon olive oil
about 1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite-sized strips
sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper
2 bell peppers (I used one green and one orange), cut into strips
1 medium-large red onion, peeled, halved, and sliced lengthwise into strips
3-4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
2 teaspoons Cajun seasoning
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried basil
12 oz. tomato sauce/puree
1/3 cup heavy cream
dried parsley, for garnish
Cook the pasta in salted boiling water until just under al dente. Drain, reserving about 2 cups of the pasta cooking water.
Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. When hot, add the chicken along with some salt and pepper. Cook for about 3-4 minutes (until the chicken is browned on one side) and then stir in the peppers, onion, garlic, Cajun seasoning, oregano, and basil. Cook, stirring often, until the chicken is cooked through and the vegetables begin to soften.
Stir in the tomato sauce and cook, stirring often, until the sauce is hot, about 3 minutes. Turn the heat to low and slowly stir in the heavy cream. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed. Let the sauce warm through, but not boil.
Stir in the pasta along with some of the pasta water to thin out the sauce, as needed. Serve immediately, topped with parsley.
What was I cooking one year ago?: carrot-ginger soup
Two years ago?: Kao soi
Three years ago?: eggplant involtini
4?: apple-cranberry coffee cake