Saturday, March 30, 2013

Deliciousness - achieved!

At last, I've done it.  I've made a recipe that is 90% mine.  I give Karen from the meat department credit for the inspiration.  Last year she cooked some chicken thighs in chicken broth.  Browned them on one side, added broth, reduced it down, added garlic, basil and bell peppers.  I thought, this would be good with pasta.  I tried it awhile ago with green beans but it was lacking slightly.  Tonight, it was perfect.  It is simplicity itself, and probably made often by people who don't give it a second thought.

I bought everything at Whole Foods (except I had Better Than Bullion, spices and garlic already) and the total came to $10.92.  I got five servings out of it which comes to $2.18 per serving, which is pretty awesome.


  • 1 package linguine ($1.49)
  • 1 pound chicken thighs (just over a pound, $4.29)
  • 1 bunch asparagus (it was on sale for $1.99/lb so $2.15) I got the thickest asparagus to avoid over cooking ~ break off the tough ends (save with the mushroom ends for stock) and cut into one inch pieces
  • .66 pound crimini mushrooms ($2.99) ~ sliced thick
  • garlic ~ 4 cloves roughly chopped
  • dried basil and rosemary
  • heaping teaspoon Better Than Bullion chicken broth dissolved in one cup water

While you wait for the linguine water to boil, saute the mushrooms in whatever random oil you use (I used hazelnut oil) with some garlic in a 12" skillet.  When the mushrooms have browned nicely scrape them into a bowl for later.  Add the chicken thighs to the skillet and brown them on both sides. Maybe the pasta water has boiled, and if so stir in the linguine.  After you flip the chicken add the broth, put the lid on the pan, turn the heat to medium low and let it simmer five minutes.  Or so, I'm really not sure.  This is where you realize you should have seasoned the mushrooms so sprinkle a little (a teaspoon?) rosemary and basil on the mushrooms.  Some kosher salt too.  When the chicken is nearly done add the asparagus stems, put the lid back on and cook for a few more minutes.  At this point the chicken did not seem ready so I took out the asparagus which was knife tender, and let it cook a little longer.  After another minute I figured the chicken looked done so I added the asparagus tips and let them cook for about a minute.  They don't take long.  Add the mushrooms and asparagus stems back to the chicken and turn off the heat.  Return the drained noodles to the pot and dump the chicken mixture in.  Give it a good stir, add some fresh cracked pepper (and perhaps some crushed red pepper) and eat!

Who knows why, but it seems like everything sinks to the bottom, so the first serving is a lot of pasta, and leftovers are a lot of vegetables.  Its probably good cold too.

If I was to make this for my vegetarian brother I would (obviously skip the chicken and use a different broth, like better than bullion fake chicken) probably reduce the amount of broth to one cup and maybe add just a little more vegetables.  Maybe more mushrooms and add peas.  Tempeh or fake meat if you like that.

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which is more important? i.e. which would you choose at the exclusion of the other?