When springtime rolls around I find almost any excuse to cook fresh asparagus we bring home from the market. This is an easy pasta dish with asparagus and chicken breasts.
Goat cheese melts into the cream sauce to make it even creamier.
The lemon juice brightens the sauce, and a glance of nutmeg adds a final note.
Feel free to play around with this one! Swap out a different cheese, or experiment with different herbs like thyme or basil, or even add some heat with a few chili pepper flakes.
Creamy Chicken and Asparagus Pasta
1 pound asparagus spears, tough ends cut off and discarded, spears cut on the diagonal in 1-inch to 1 1/2 inch pieces
3/4 pound penne or bow tie pasta
2 tablespoons butter
1 pound boneless chicken breasts, trimmed of excess fat and sinews, and cut into strips 1 1/2 inches by 1/2 inch
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
3 tablespoons chopped shallots
1/4 cup chicken broth
3/4 cups heavy whipping cream
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
5 ounces goat cheese
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
Blanch the asparagus:
Bring a large pot of salted water (1 teaspoon salt for every quart of water) to a boil. Add the asparagus and blanch for 1 minute. Remove with a slotted spoon to a bowl and rinse with cold water to stop the cooking. Set aside
Cook the pasta:
In the same water you used to blanch the asparagus, add the pasta and prepare according to the package instructions for al dente, while cooking the chicken.
Reserve a half cup of the cooking water for adding back to the pasta if needed.
Sauté the chicken strips and shallots:
Heat butter in a large skillet on medium high heat. Add the chicken strips to the pan in an even layer. Sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste. Do not stir, cook until lightly browned on one side. Add shallots, cook for a minute longer.
Add the broth, cream, nutmeg, cheese, lemon zest, herbs, and most of the Parmesan:
Cook, stirring, until the cheese has fully melted and incorporated into the cream.
(Reserve the rest of the Parmesan to sprinkle on before serving.)
Add the asparagus:
Let come to a simmer and simmer for a minute.
Stir in the lemon juice:
Sprinkle with more black pepper to taste.
Place pasta in a serving bowl. Stir in the chicken asparagus cream sauce:
Add as much of the reserved pasta cooking water as needed for a creamy texture for the pasta. Serve with reserved grated Parmesan.
|Nutrition Facts (per serving)|
|Servings: 4 to 6|
|Amount per serving|
|% Daily Value*|
|Total Fat 28g||35%|
|Saturated Fat 16g||81%|
|Total Carbohydrate 25g||9%|
|Dietary Fiber 3g||10%|
|Total Sugars 3g|
|Vitamin C 7mg||36%|
|*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.|