Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Quick Garlic Pasta

Ever wonder why a plate of pasta (in a fine restaurant) tastes so good? It's because the chefs are not afraid to use fat. Their aim is to make the pasta delicious, not to worry about your figure. Try this recipe and you will think that you are eating at your favorite neighborhood trattoria. It is simple and tasty.

4 oz. dry spaghetti
2 tablespoons light olive oil or vegetable oil
3 thick pats of butter
2 tablespoons very fresh minced or pressed garlic (about 2-3 large cloves)
1/4 teaspoon dried red pepper flakes
1 boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into bite sized pieces
1 small head brocolli, cut into small florets
1/4 cup dry white wine
1/4 cup strong, crumbled blue cheese (like Stilton) or freshly grated Parmesan
Salt to taste

1) Set a pot full of hot, salted water, covered over high heat. Add pasta when the water is at a rolling boil.

2) Set a large non-stick saute pan over medium-high heat. Pour in oil and add the butter. When all melts add in the garlic and red pepper flakes. Swirl the pan and allow to cook for just a minute or two (do not let the garlic brown).

3) Now add in the chicken and allow to cook, covered for 2-3 minutes. Stir and add in brocolli. Cover and cook for 2 minutes more, then add in the wine and crumbled blue cheese (wait until after the dish is complete to add cheese if using Parmesan), cover and allow to simmer for 2 minutes. Drain pasta when al dente. Taste sauce and add salt, if needed.

4) Add pasta to the saute pan and toss to combine with sauce.

Serves 2. You may substitute 6 oz raw shrimp, cut in half length wise, for the chicken, if desired.

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