24 April, 2010

Pasta with Lemon Rosemary Chicken and Asparagus


How about creating a dish by starting with its spices and herbs?
The idea for this simple pasta dish started with my love for rosemary and lemon zest. I have always been in love with rosemary, its wooden, earthy smell and flavor. In fact, I already love it for the smell on my hands after preparing it for a meal.
My love for lemon zest is somewhat newer. I find the flavor so fresh, pure and natural. It's a perfect complement to the earthy dark flavor of the rosemary. As I always use lemon and rosemary when we have Roast Chicken, it was obvious to use small pieces of chicken for my pasta dish. Now the vegetable part was still missing.
Ever since I was pregnant with my second kid, I have loved green vegetables. To be honest, any dish looks better and/or healthier to me if it has something green in it. This time I needed something small/thin and quick-cooking so, decided to go for green baby asparagus. And that is already it. Stir in the cooked pasta, add some more olive oil if it seems to dry, sprinkle some freshly ground pepper over it and ready is your meal.
By the way, I had the chicken asparagus mix stirred into brown rice the other day and it was delicious too.

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PASTA WITH LEMON ROSEMARY CHICKEN AND ASPARAGUS


250g pasta (I usually use whole wheat Fusili)

3 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons fresh rosemary
1 tablespoon lemon zest
2 chicken breasts, cut into bites sizes
1 cup green baby asparagus, cut into 1-inch-pieces
salt and pepper to taste

Serves 2
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Cook pasta according to instructions.

In a wok or deep pan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Throw in the rosemary and fry for 1-2 minutes until it becomes fragrant. Add chicken pieces and lemon zest and fry for about 5 minutes over medium-high, stirring frequently. Season with salt and pepper. Turn the heat down to medium, then stir in the asparagus, and put a lid on the pan. Cook until asparagus is softened, but still has a bite of a bite, about 5 minutes.

Drain the pasta, stir into the chicken and asparagus mixture. Sprinkle with freshly ground pepper. Serve immediately.

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