We love our pasta here. I mean it’s really quite an addiction. I’m pretty sure I couldn’t, even if my life depended on it, go more than a week without pasta. OK, I’m not sure I’d make it a few days. Forget a week.
In the warmer days though, I’m not always feeling a big heavy sauce. Instead something light & fresh is more my pasta alley. In comes a sun-dried tomato, basil, chicken pasta in an olive oil, red onion, garlic toss with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice & healthy dose of Parmesan. You didn’t think I could do it without cheese did you? Cheese, like manna from Heaven only cheesy & more local.
Here’s What You Need:
2 Chicken Breasts
3 Tablespoons of Olive Oil
1/2 Teaspoon of Salt
1/2 Teaspoon of Pepper
1 Whole Red Onion
3 Cloves of Garlic
1 Tablespoon of Dried Basil (3 Tablespoons of Fresh Basil Chopped)
2/3 Cup of Sun-Dried Tomato
Penne Pasta 1 Box
Pasta Water (save about 1/4 Cup)
1/2 a Fresh Whole Lemon
1/3 Cup of Parmesan Cheese
Feeds 6–8. And takes about 15–20 minutes to make.
How to Put it Together:
Start your water on a high heat, you are going to bring it to a boil while you prepare your chicken. And you will also heat 2 Tablespoons of Olive Oil on a medium heat in a medium pan to cook your chicken & fixins.
Take 2 chicken breasts. I wonder if chickens ever dream of taking two human breasts & making pasta from them? That’s really a gross thought actually. I also apologize upfront to those who are, like, totally grossed out by chicken or raw meat of any kind.
I’m obviously not as grossed out by it. Gizzards I am still grossed out by. However, not cubed raw chicken.
Add Chicken to the pan with the Olive Oil. Cook through. Wipe drool off your mouth.
Salt & Pepper the Chicken. Don’t forget to stir your chicken.
While this is cooking through, chop 1 whole red Onion. For those wondering, this is NOT the same board that I cubed the chicken on. I used a larger board for meat & I have a smaller board for veggies & fruit. I also just discovered a wonderful wooden chopping board never opened or used in one of our storage bins that will get lots of use.
Add your onion into the pan AND mince your 3 cloves of garlic, add right into the pan with the chicken along with the 1 remaining tablespoon of olive oil.
Add your Basil. I would have loved to use fresh basil when I made this & took pictures, I have had it with fresh & I loved it. It was really good with dried basil as well. But fresh gives it some more texture, has that fresh from the garden old-world love & is really beautiful color. However, as Hubby told me “You work with what you have.” That and it was raining, he wasn’t going out in the rain to get the fresh after I realized I ran out. I know, MEN! Not wanting to go out in the pouring rain for something I basically had on hand. Silly man.
Then comes the Sun-dried Tomatoes! I love these, there is a sweetness to them that pairs perfectly with basil.
Toss those sun-dried bad boys on in your pan.
Anyway…while you are bringing it together the Pasta should be ready to add into boiling water. Don’t overcook your pasta. Please. No seriously, please. It should have a little chewiness to it not be a limp noodle. No one wants a limp noodle, not in pasta not in life. Then drain pasta. Remember to keep 1/4 cup of the pasta water AND DO NOT RINSE YOUR PASTA–this is a sin! Rinsing removes the good starch that helps your sauce stick. And plus “Thou Shall Not Rinse Pasta” was part of the 15 Commandments. You know before Moses dropped the last 5. Trust me, that’s totally true. I saw it in a Mel Brooks movie.
OK, add past to a large pasta bowl or some large bowl that you will pretend is made just for pasta, no one will judge you. I promise. We got this bowl when we were married, from our bridesmaids. It gets a lot of use now with us sitting as a family around the table. Toss in your chicken and goodies mix into the bowl.
Hold yourself back from diving in. Mix it all together with 1/3 Cup of Parmesan & Top with the fresh squeezed juice of 1/2 a lemon. Add more lemon if you like.
A perfect pasta dish for a warm weather day. Best to be passed around with family or friends, good conversation & lots of laughs. We had it for lunch, it’s was light enough for a mid-day. Also, it’s really good the next day when you are all by yourself & stealing a few minutes to just relax. Trust me. This much I know.