28 July 2010

what's cooking wednesdays: the recipe makeover edition

photo courtesy of ree!

y'all know i am a MAY-JUH {major a la victoria beckham} pioneer woman fan.  i got to meet her in person this spring and have her sign my cookbook.  she. is. DARLING.  last week she posted a recipe for lemon basil pasta with grilled chicken and i knew i had to make it.  i am a lemon FREAK.  love, love, love it.  thursday night i happened to have a leftover grilled chicken breast in the fridge anyways, so that seemed as good a time as any. 

that said, i was not about to put that much cream and cheese into a recipe.  so i did a wee bit of tweaking and it turned out insanely delicious with a lot less fat.  here's my version of ree's own brand of genius:

grilled chicken with lemon basil pasta

serves 2
1 whole grilled chicken breast, sliced
1/4 - 1/2 pound penne pasta, cooked until al dente {i like mine a little overcooked if truth be told}
2 tbsp. butter
1 1/2 - 2 tbsp. flour
1 whole lemon, zested and juiced
1/2 cup 1%  or 2% milk
1 cup grated parmesan or romano cheese {i hadn't been to the grocery store, so i used the fake stuff in the kraft bottle.  it turned out tasty.}
salt and pepper, to taste
big handful of basil leaves, chopped {the beau helped here and chose to tear the basil leaves.  whatever floats your boat.}

cook pasta, reserving 1 cup of the cooking water before draining.  set pasta aside.

in the same pot, melt butter over medium heat.  whisk in the flour until there are no lumps and allow mixture to cook for a few minutes.  slowly whisk in the milk.  continue to whisk until sauce thickens.  dump in cheese and whisk until combined.  add in the lemon zest, juice, salt, and pepper.  check consistency, adding some of the hot pasta water to loosen the sauce or more cheese to thicken the sauce if necessary.  check for seasonings.

pour pasta and sauce into a large bowl.  sprinkle basil all over the top and then add the sliced chicken breast.  voila!

i served this with some fresh sliced tomatoes and cucumbers tossed with olive oil, white wine vinegar, and salt and pepper.  i think you could also add another healthy dimension to this recipe {and stretch it to feed more people} by adding in some steamed broccoli.  it would also be delicious with some toasted pine nuts sprinkled on top.  the beau raved about this dish, so since it's a keeper, i'm going to keep playing around with it until i get it just right.

bon appetit!


Lexilooo said...

this sounds delightful! I will have to try this recipe!

Anonymous said...

Just came across your blog via your comment on Blue-Eyed Bride... and it's so funny you posted this recipe! I have it on the menu to make tonight except I am going full throttle and using all the creams and cheeses so we'll see how it goes.

Southern Champagne Wishes said...

Looks so good! I love PW - so jealous that you got to meet her. I'm waiting for her to come here for a book signing!

Anonymous said...

So glad you were inspired by our post! Thanks for sharing this delicious recipe!!

Eddie & Jaithan

Kristin said...

I really need to pick up her cookbook! Thank you so much for entering our giveaway for The Sart and Domino books!

Michael - Innkeeper said...

i love any pasta, but this would looks extra good!

i'll have to give it a try! thanks!

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