Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Artichoke and Spinach PESTO Pasta with Chicken and Fresh Tomatoes

I have said this many times. I love fresh ingredients. I came home from the farmers market and look at the new purchases and try to figure out what I will be making. I had my eye on the fresh spinach, basil, garlic and cheese. I LOVE LOVE spinach artichoke dip!!! I decided to try something different. I am not sure if anyone has come up with it. I made it into a pesto. I would of probably even tried to put a little mayo (I LOVE MAYO), but my husband DESPISES MAYO! He can taste it....EVEN if I only add very little...
Needless to say, this was a huge hit tonight. My husband loved it. He returned to the kitchen many times to pick out of the dish after dinner. He called it addicting...
The fresh tomatoes added the freshness that I love!
I hope you enjoy!!!

1lb penna
2 Tb + 3/4 CP of Olive oil
3 Chicken Breast cut in cubes
3 garlic cloves
1/2 cp. Almonds
1 15 oz. can of drained Artichokes
1 cp Spinach
1/4 cp. fresh basil
3/4 cp. fresh parm. + 1/4 cp. parm
The juice of one lemon
1/4 cp. planko
3 TB butter
2 Roma tomatoes
salt and pepper
Add the penna to salted boiling water until al dente. Brown the chicken with the 2 Tablespoons of oil. As it browned I made the pesto. I added the garlic and almonds to my food processor. Processed. I added the drained artichokes, spinach, basil , lemon juice and 3/4 cp. of the parm. cheese and processed. Slowly stream the 3/4 cp. of olive oil into the shoot of the processor as you process the ingredients. When done salt and pepper.
I tossed the penna and cooked chicken into the pesto toss to coat. Add the pasta in a greased 9 x13. Top with the additional 1/4 cp. parm cheese and planko. Break the butter into pieces and put on top. Add the Roma tomatoes. Cook on 350 for 20 minutes covered. Take the cover off and broil for a few minutes and make a crust on top.