12 ounces bow-tie pasta (farfalle)
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
Salt and pepper
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 cloves garlic minced
1/2 cup chicken broth
1/2 cup half-and-half
1/4 cup heavy cream
1 cup grated parmesan
1 cup halved grape tomatoes
4 ounces baby spinach
2 tablespoons fresh parsley minced
First, bring a large pot of water to a boil and cook the pasta. Drain and set the pasta aside.
Then, slice the chicken into thin strips and season them with salt and pepper.
Next, in a large skillet, heat the butter and oil over medium-high heat. Add the chicken strips and cook them until they are a deep golden brown on both sides and cooked in the middle.
Remove the chicken and add the minced garlic. Cook the garlic for one minute, then pour in the broth. Let it bubble up and reduce for 1 1/2 to 2 minutes.
Then, add the half-and-half, cream, and some salt and pepper to taste. Add the parmesan, whisking them all constantly until it’s all combined. Allow the liquid to heat up and thicken for a few minutes. If it gets too thick, you may want to add a little more chicken broth to thin it. When the sauce looks your desired consistency, remove it from heat.
Return the cooked chicken to the skillet and add the grape tomatoes, spinach, and pasta.
Toss it, taste it, and add seasoning to taste. Top it off with the minced parsley and serve immediately in the skillet. Enjoy!
I first ate this at a family reunion at my aunt’s house, and it quickly became a favorite with my family. We usually request “Aunt Becky’s pasta” for dinner, as she was the one to introduce us to this meal. The meal is perfect for large parties, simply adjust the ingredient amounts to meet the amount of people to feed. My younger brother will often ask for this meal on his birthday whenever his friends will come over, so we just double (or sometimes triple) the ingredients and it’s a filling meal for a group of growing boys.
Another great thing about this recipe is the ingredients can be easily adjusted to add or take away anything depending on dietary needs or taste. You could substitute or add other types of meat, for example, such as bacon or sausage. Sometimes I add bacon in addition to the chicken and makes a great combination. Alternately, if you are a vegetarian, you could take out the meat and substitute it with vegetables of your choice.
I love pasta, and this is one of my favorites because of how creamy and rich the sauce is. Sometimes if it’s made while I’m at home, I’ll take some back to Pitt with me in a Tupperware container. The pasta refrigerates or freezes well, so it you’re packing some up for your friends or made too much it should be fine for a day or two.