Tuesday, 5 July 2011

Pasta with Chicken, Mushrooms & Snow Peas

I used one great big huge onion, greens and bulb, for this but you can use whatever oniony stuff suits you and is available. Garlic scapes would be great, and I've also been using a lot of shallot greens this year. They are really delicious, like garlic scapes but more tender and with that mild, rich flavour of shallots. Also, if I had had any fresh basil I would have used that for sure - 3 or 4 tablespoons finely minced. I was not on the ball when it came to getting basil into the garden this year. There's some there now, but it's going to take a while. I would also have preferred a short, stubby pasta shape to match the chicken and vegetables but spaghetti was what was in the house so spaghetti it had to be.

2 to 3 servings
30 minutes prep time

Pasta with Chicken Mushrooms and Snow Peas
Prepare the Vegetables:
250 grams (1/2 pound) snow peas
250 grams (1/2 pound) button mushrooms
6 to 8 garlic scapes OR green onions

Wash the snow peas and pinch off the stem end, pulling away any strings along the edges. Clean, trim and quarter the mushrooms. Trim and chop the green onions or garlic scapes. If using green onions, separate the white parts and the green parts.

Cook the Pasta:
225 grams (1/2 pound) dry pasta

Put a large pot of salted water on to boil. Add the pasta and boil rapidly until just tender. Two or three minutes before it is done, add the prepared snow peas.

Finish the Sauce:
250 grams (1/2 pound) skinless, boneless chicken pieces
2 tablespoons mild vegetable oil
3 tablespoons flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon rubbed basil
1 1/2 cups whole milk or light cream

Cut the chicken into bite-sized pieces. Heat the oil in a large skillet, and when hot add the chicken pieces, mushrooms and either the garlic scape pieces or the whites from the chopped green onions. Cook, stirring frequently, until the chicken and mushroom pieces are lightly and fairly evenly browned.

Sprinkle over the flour, salt and pepper. Cook for several minutes more, continuing to stir frequently. Add the onion greens, if using, and stir them in. Add the mustard, basil and milk or cream, and mix in well. Allow the mixture to simmer for a few minutes, until thickened, but don't let it boil hard.

The peas should be added to the pasta around the time the cream goes into the sauce, if this is timed right. Drain the cooked pasta and peas well, and toss them with the sauce.

Last year at this time I made Strawberry-Currant Jam. This year, the currants are nowhere near ready yet - it's a very different year! Strawberries are still in full swing though!

No comments: