Monday, May 24, 2010

Pasta with Bell Peppers and Sausage/Chicken and Mushrooms

So this is one of the things we actually made twice while we were in Park City last week.  Our hotel room had a kitchenette and so to save money on eating we went grocery shopping and generally cooked twice a day and went out for one meal each day.  And from eating out, I definitely got some inspiration for what I would like to try to make myself later!  Anyway, back to the pasta.  We used Italian sausage one night and chicken strips the next night, but the rest of the recipe is about the same.  Hope you enjoy, we thought it was super tasty!

Oh, and if you are a foodie and like to go to Park City, there's a fantastic olive oil place you need to check out downtown.  It's called Mountain Town Olive Oil Company.  They let you taste olive oils and balsamic vinegars from all over the world, and there is some pretty tasty stuff!

Pasta with Sausage or Chicken and Bell Peppers and Mushrooms

1 lb whole wheat pasta, any shape that will hold some sauce
1 lb either chicken tenders or Italian sausage (in the casing)
1-2 sweet bell peppers, red, yellow or orange, sliced into thin strips
8 oz sliced white button mushrooms
2-3 tbsp pesto (you can use my recipe or just get a jar of it)
2-3 tbsp olive oil-- we used the Tuscan Herb infused stuff from the fancy store downtown, if you don't have that, use regular, but add some basil and oregano to the sauce mix, and add some garlic too!

Cook pasta to pkg directions.  Reserve some of the cooking water from the pasta while it's still cooking before draining (you'll use that for the sauce).

Cook meat first.  If using sausage, cook the sausage in the casing, whole, then slice after completely cooked. t I usually steam the sausage with about a cup of water with them in the skillet til the water evaporates or just til it all looks cooked through, then I drain off the extra water and brown the outsides with a bit of oil, then slice.  If you are using chicken, slice the tenders into smaller strips, so they are bite sized...about 1/4 inch wide strips, and about an inch and a half long.  Cook these completely and if you need to, remove from the skillet so you have enough room to cook the veggies and then add the meat back once the veggies have reduced in size.

Saute mushrooms in a bit of the oil, then add bell pepper strips and continue to saute.  Add meat back to pan to bring to temperature, add starchy cooking water to the mix and the pesto.  Stir to combine the pesto with the water and the veggies and meat--should be a kind of slurry mixture, not too thick, but will coat the pasta.   Toss veggies and meat mixture with pasta and serve.

I'll add a picture this week, I promise.  It was tasty!

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