Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Lemony Herb Pasta with Chicken, Broccoli & Bacon

I clipped the original recipe for this dinner from a magazine years ago.  I can't even remember which one!  I've hung onto it for awhile but haven't ever made it - BIG mistake.
It's so YUMMY!
I decided to make a few adjustments to fit our family's tastes and the final result was perfect!
Creamy, lemony, slightly cheesy & bacon-y - everything a pasta dinner should be.
I hope you love it as much as we did.

Lemony Herb Pasta with Chicken, Broccoli & Bacon
Serves 6-8
4 slices bacon
2 cups chicken, cooked & cut into bite-size chunks
1 15-oz container part-skim ricotta cheese
5 Tblsp lemon juice
2 tsp lemon zest
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/3 cup chopped parsley (or 2 Tblsp dried parsley)
1 Tblsp olive oil
1/2 - 1 tsp salt (to your taste - start with 1/2 tsp & add more at the end, if needed)
1/4 tsp black pepper
1 pound (16 oz) penne pasta
1 pound broccoli, cut into 1 inch pieces

  • Cook bacon until crispy, crumble & set aside.  Save leftover bacon grease in skillet (you'll heat up the cooked chicken in this skillet).
  • Bring a large pot of water to a boil.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together ricotta, lemon juice, lemon zest, Parmesan, parsley, olive oil, salt & pepper.  Set aside.
  • Add penne to boiling water & cook for about 7 minutes or until tender.  Add broccoli to pot for the final 3 minutes of cooking time.
  • While penne is cooking, heat the same skillet you used for the bacon to medium-medium high.  Add cooked, cubed chicken.  Stir to coat with bacon grease.  Leave in skillet until warmed thoroughly, stirring occasionally.
  • When penne & broccoli are done, reserve 1 cup pasta water.  Set aside.
  • Drain pasta/broccoli & place in large serving bowl.
  • Add ricotta mixture to serving bowl with pasta/broccoli.  Stir well.
  • Add heated chicken & crumbled bacon to serving bowl.  Stir well to combine.  Add reserved pasta water by 1/4 cupful if necessary (to increase the creaminess of the cheese mixture - you may not need any pasta water at all).
  • Serve immediately.
We served this with garlic bread.



1 comment:

Kim said...

Oh Yum! I can just taste this by looking at it! I bet it was just amazing! What a great combo chicken and creamy pasta. We often make similar meals like our own take on 'helper' box meals!


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