Pesto Chicken Over Pasta
This dish is a “fast-no oven-required” dish! By the time you are waiting for the pasta- water to boil, mix pesto ingredients in the blender or food processor and brown the chicken in a skillet. You can even substitute chicken strips with shrimp. Both cook quickly. For hectic days you can save an extra step by using the “Go-To” Pesto – see 8.11.16 post- that you prepared in advance and stored in your freezer OR it is okay to simply buy a store brand pesto you like!
Make Pesto Sauce: Basil leaves, 2 handfuls washed and dried; Grated Romano Cheese- 1/4 cup; Olive Oil – 3 Tablespoons; Garlic 1 medium clove; Pignoli Nuts ¼ cup (walnuts can be substituted for pignoli nuts) Add all ingredients to Blender or Food Processor with sharp blades and Puree on high power to form a paste. You will need approximately 2-3 tablespoons of the pesto for this dish. Save remaining sauce in freezer or refrigerator for another day.
Chicken Cutlets, half pound (about 4 thin cutlets), with a sharp knife cut into half inch strips.
Butter or Vegetable oil, 2 teaspoons.
Pasta, 1 pound of your favorite kind. I like how the pesto sauce clings to Tagliatelle, a fettucine- like flat noodle (see photo).
Fill a 4 Quart Sauce Pot with water. Place on stove over medium heat and bring to boil for the pasta. As you wait for the water to boil, you can make the pesto in blender (see Pesto Sauce above). very quickly in about 60 seconds. If you want to save more time simply use 2- 3 tablespoons of ready-made Pesto.
In a skillet sauté the chicken strips in melted butter until browned on the outside. Add the pesto sauce to the chicken in the skillet, and continue to cook chicken over medium heat. By this time the water in sauce pot should be boiling. Add the pasta, and cook until al dente or about 10 minutes. Drain Pasta. Portion 1 cup serving of pasta into a dish, and spoon chicken with pesto over pasta. Makes about 4 servings.
This dish takes approximately 30 minutes to prepare. Serve with fresh grated parmesan cheese. Sprinkle a few whole or chopped pignoli nuts on top for a garnish.