.. Asparagus, Bacon and Sun-dried Tomatoes. This recipe is a personal favorite and a favorite of many staffers at Biscotti. Maybe it’s because the sun-dried tomatoes and bacon make this dish intense in flavor and color, perfectly complementing the light flavor and color of the asparagus, chicken, and sauce. The result is a dish more pleasing than the sum of its parts. An important part of sauté, and all cooking, is knowing what ingredients work well together. I devised this particular dish using pure instinct. Though this is a trait common to naturally good cooks, it’s an ability that can be developed even by the most “by-the-book” cooks. Just trust your ideas and inspirations. If something you’ve concocted doesn’t taste good, try again with other ingredients. The point is, don’t be afraid to experiment.
Makes 4 servings
1 pound linguine (or favorite GF linguine)
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
Pinch of red pepper flakes
2 large boneless chicken breasts, split, cut in a total of 12 to 16 strips, and dredged in seasoned flour
12 stalks fresh asparagus, trimmed and parboiled so as to still be firm, halved lengthwise if thick
3 medium cloves garlic, minced
2 to 3 tablespoons white wine
1 cup White Wine Sauce (see below)
1/2 cup chicken broth
1/4 cup dry-packed sun-dried tomatoes, cut into thin strips
3 tablespoons heavy cream
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
6 slices bacon, cooked crisp, drained, and broken into small pieces
1 tablespoon Italian (flat-leaf) parsley, stems removed and chopped
Cook the pasta according to package directions in a large pot of salted, boiling water.
While the pasta cooks, put the olive oil and red pepper flakes in a large sauté pan over high heat for 1 minute. Sauté the chicken for 1 to 2 minutes per side, or until it turns opaque and golden brown. Cook the asparagus and garlic for 30 seconds, or just until the garlic begins to brown. Deglaze the pan by adding the wine, stir, and cook for 1 minute more. Add the White Wine Sauce, chicken broth, and sun-dried tomatoes, and cook for about 2 minutes, until the sauce begins to boil. Add the cream, stir, reduce heat to low, and simmer for about 1 minute, until the sauce thickens. Remove from the heat and season with the salt and pepper.
To serve, drain the pasta and toss it in a large serving bowl with half of the liquid part of the sauce. Place the pasta on individual serving plates and top each portion with some additional sauce and the chicken, asparagus, and sun-dried tomatoes. Sprinkle with the bacon and parsley.
Note: If necessary, the bacon pieces can be warmed in a microwave oven for a few seconds.
White Wine Sauce
I devised this sauce when I got frustrated with the fact that there was never enough sauce in the pan for 1 pound of pasta. And it was too thin and runny to coat the pasta. So in the restaurant I always had a big batch of this sauce on the back burner that I would add to almost everything (The sauce itself is bland so it doesn’t interfere with the taste of the dish.)I was sautéing on the front burners. At home I usually have a bunch in deli containers or in ice cube trays in the freezer that I can use when needed, or I can easily whip up a batch on the fly before I start a new dish. It really easy.
1/4 cup of olive oil
1/4 cup of flour
1/2 cup of white wine
1 cup of chicken broth
Place a medium saucepan over med/high heat. Add flour and stir to incorporate. This makes a roux which will thicken the sauce. Cook for about a minute and add the wine. It will get very thick at this point. Slowly add the broth and stir to incorporate. Reduce heat and cook on low for about 20 minutes or until the strong taste of wine has mellowed.
Sautéed chicken with asparagus. Great over pasta, rice or alone. Click to tweet
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