Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Cajun Chicken Pasta

This pasta dish is everything rolled into one.  It is rich, flavorful, hearty, spicy, bold and creamy all at once. Not to mention extremely filling and therefore positively satisfying.  I simply love the combination of the bold spicy Cajun seasonings along with the rich cream base.  They are a match made in heaven when you add in some perfectly sauteed chicken and toss it all up in some cavatappi pasta.  Which, just happens to be my family's most favorite type of pasta.  It is thick and hearty with a fun tubular spiral shape, which is why it works so well in this dish-it picks up a lot of the heavy thick sauce in each bite.

2 lbs boneless/ skinless chicken breasts (3-4)
1-2 T. of extra virgin olive oil
a lot of Cajun seasoning ( I literally used a good dousing on all sides of the chicken)
sea salt/ fresh cracked pepper to liking
1 pint of heavy whipping cream
 one carton of grape tomatoes (halved)
one carton of chopped baby portabella mushrooms
1 lb of uncooked cavatappi pasta

-Saute your chicken in e.v.o., Cajun seasoning, salt and pepper over med-high heat until thoroughly cooked (don't over-flip or you will lose your crusting-the flavor). Remove the chicken once its done and dice it up into bite sized pieces comparable to the size of the tomatoes and the mushrooms.  Toss a tiny bit more e.v.o. and the veggies into the pan; saute' until softened.  Add the chopped chicken back into the pan with the finished vegetables to reheat.  Once chicken and veggies are done, pour in the cream and cook on about high while constantly stirring to reach a roaring boil; reduce heat and continue stirring for it to tighten up.  Meanwhile, cook your pasta with a little bit of e.v.o. added into the water before adding in the pasta to it once it reaches a roaring boil. Cook for about 8-9 minutes for Au dente' (it will continue to cook in the sauce). Strain out and fold into the sauce and chicken. The key is to OVER-season this dish. The cream tames it down. It should be spicy especially in the chicken.  Serves 6.  Enjoy!