Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Louisiana Chicken Pasta

I had been wanting to make this pasta ever since I stumbled upon it on Annie's Eats. A couple years ago, Kevin fell in love with a spicy, creamy, delicious chicken pasta from Walt's Wharf in Seal Beach.  As delicious as it was, they discontinued it! When I found this recipe I thought it may be similar to the one he loved, so I was dying to give it a try.  I made this dish on Halloween night for dinner, so I replaced the red and green bell pepper with orange/ yellow just to be a little festive.  I have to admit, we were in such a rush to eat it once it was done that I forgot to take a picture!  By the time I remembered, Kevin was half done with his second serving-- I took a pic of what was left, but it didn't turn out very well.  So, I had no choice but to steal Annie's picture.  We thoroughly enjoyed this pasta, the fact that I forgot to even take a picture of it is truly a testament to how delicious it was!

Louisiana Chicken Pasta

For the chicken:
1 large boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into bite-sized pieces
Salt and pepper
Cajun seasoning
For the pasta:
8 oz. bowtie pasta
Kosher salt 
For the sauce:
1 tbsp. butter
1 tbsp. olive oil
1 red bell pepper, seeded and coarsely chopped
1 green bell pepper, seeded and coarsely chopped
1/4 cup yellow onion, chopped
3/4 tsp. kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. Cajun seasoning
1/4 tsp. ground cayenne pepper
1 cup half-and-half
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 tbsp. cornstarch
1 tbsp. water
3 scallions, chopped 
To cook the chicken, heat a small amount of butter or olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.  Season the chicken pieces with salt and pepper, and a generous sprinkle of Cajun seasoning.   Add to the skillet and cook until lightly browned and cooked through.  Transfer to a plate and set aside.  
Bring a pot of salted water to boil.  Cook the pasta according to package directions.   Drain the cooked pasta and set aside.
Meanwhile, return the skillet to medium heat and heat the butter and olive oil until the butter has melted.   Add the bell peppers and onion to the pan.  Mix in the salt, pepper, Cajun seasoning and cayenne pepper.  Cook until the vegetables are tender, about 6-8 minutes.  Add the half-and-half and heavy cream to the pan and bring to a simmer.  In a small bowl, whisk together the cornstarch and water, and add to the skillet once the cream mixture has started to bubble.  Allow to cook until thickened, about 5 minutes.
When the sauce has thickened, add the cooked pasta and chicken pieces to the pan.  Stir well to combine and cook at medium-low heat just until the chicken is warmed through.  Adjust the amount of Cajun seasoning if necessary to suit your tastes.  Stir in the scallions.  Serve immediately and top with additional Cajun seasoning, if desired. 
Source: Annie's Eats

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