Recipe by Artichoke gal
Chances are you have all of the ingredients for this pasta dish on hand, in your refrigerator and cupboard. That’s how it came together in my kitchen, and what a felicitous combination of flavors it turned out to be. Plus it goes together in a half hour or less. Be sure to use a milder blue cheese so it doesn’t end up overwhelming the other flavors. You could substitute broccoli for the spinach, and you could leave out the chicken for a vegetarian dish (use vegetable broth instead of chicken). This goes well with a dry white or medium-bodied red wine.
- 1 lb corkscrew macaroni
- 1 large whole boneless skinless chicken breast
- 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 3 large garlic cloves, peeled and thinly sliced
- 1 (8 ounce) bagpre-washed Baby Spinach
- 1 large red bell pepper, roasted, skinned, seeded and cut into thin strips (can substitute bottled just as good)
- 1 1⁄2 cups chicken broth (preferably low-sodium)
- 1 bunch fresh basil, sliced into ribbons
- 8 ounces gorgonzola, cut into 1 cubes (or other mild, creamy blue cheese)
- salt and pepper
- 1⁄3 cup pine nuts, toasted
- freshly grated parmesan cheese
Directions See How It's Made
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook pasta 10 minutes or until al dente; drain.
- Cut chicken into ½--inch pieces and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Heat 1 tablespoons olive oil in a large sauté pan and sauté chicken pieces until just cooked through, around 5 minutes. Remove chicken and pan juices to a bowl and set aside.
- Heat remaining 1 tablespoons olive oil in same pan and sauté garlic until translucent. Do not allow it to brown.
- Add the washed spinach and sauté until wilted. Add chicken broth and red peppers and bring to a boil. Add basil and gorgonzola and stir over medium-high heat until cheese melts completely.
- Add drained pasta, chicken and juices to sauté pan and heat for 1 minute, mixing thoroughly with vegetable-cheese mixture. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Divide among serving plates and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese and toasted pine nuts. Serve immediately.