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Grilled Chicken Florentine Pasta

April 4, 2014

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My friend Carl sent me this recipe and it’s really delicious.   Comforting and creamy yet reasonable in the calories department, with lots of spinach (my favorite).

I used chicken tenders instead of the chicken breasts.  For some reason, bone-in chicken breasts, are scarce at my local Shoprite.  Either they are humongous or really close to the expiration date, neither acceptable to me.

And in most recipes that contain pasta, I halved the amount.  I also chose to use Penne instead of the linguine, but either or any pasta would work great in this recipe.

Grilled Chicken Florentine Pasta (Cooking Light September 2012)

l pound (approximately) Chicken Tenders

3/4 teaspoon salt, divided

3/4 teaspoon black pepper, divided

olive oil

4 ounces of Penne or linguine or pasta of your choice

2 tablespoons canola oil

3 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh garlic

1 cup whole milk

1 cup chicken broth, preferably Swanson

3 ounces Parmesan cheese, grated (preferably Stella or your favorite)

4 cups fresh spinach leaves (up to 5 ounces)

Prepare grill to medium high heat.

Brush chicken breasts with olive oil on both sides and then sprinkle with 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.  Grill chicken, 3 minutes on each side or until done.  Remove from grill and let stand for 10 minutes.  Cut chicken tender lengthwise to get 3 strips and then cut again crosswise, to get 6 small pieces.

Cook the pasta according to the package direction.  Drain well and keep warm.

Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium heat.  Add oil to pan.  Add flour and garlic and cook until garlic is browned, about 2 minutes, stirring constantly.  Add milk and chicken broth and stir with a whisk.  Bring to a simmer and cook for 2 minutes or until thickened.  Add cheese, stirring until cheese melts.  Add remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper.  Add spinach stirring constantly until spinach wilts.  Add pasta and chicken and stir until combined and warmed through.  Serve immediately.

prepping chicken for the grill:

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mise en place:

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grilled chicken:

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chicken cut up:

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sauteing oil, flour and garlic:

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adding milk and broth:

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add the cheese:

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add salt, pepper, spinach:

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pasta and chicken:

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and serve, thanks Carl!

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