Chicken And Spinach Pasta

DF, GF

I really love pasta.  It’s one of those comfort foods for me that just never gets old.  Occasionally I like meatballs and spaghetti, but most other times I want something without a red sauce.  I like marinara, but there is a time and a place.  Most of the time I like to experiment with sauces by using olive oil, white wine, pumpkin, or in this case “butter” and pancetta.  Although I didn’t use a lot of either ingredient it’s enough to provide a stable flavor foundation.  On top of those firm flavors I added garlic and spinach, two things when combined with just each other make a lasting impact.  Try this recipe today for something different than a traditional pasta recipe with red sauce.

Food 061

Chicken And Spinach Pasta
4 ounces pancetta, chopped
2 tbs vegan butter (suggested: earth balance)
2 c baby portabella mushrooms, chopped
1 c onion, chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
salt
1 lb ground chicken
4 c frozen spinach, thawed and ringed of excess water
1 c chicken broth
1 (12 ounce) box of whole wheat or gluten free pasta

Bring a large pot of water to a boil, cook pasta according to package instructions.  Before draining the pasta, reserve 1 cup of starchy cooking water.  Set pasta aside.

Heat olive oil over medium high heat in a large skillet. Add pancetta and cook until crisp, use a slotted spoon to move pancetta to a paper towel lined plate.  Add 1 tbs butter, mushrooms, onion, garlic, red pepper flakes, and salt to taste.  Cook until onions and mushrooms soften, about 3 minutes.  Add ground chicken, break up and cook until browned.  Once chicken has browned add frozen spinach, chicken broth, 1/2 c starching cooking liquid and remaining 1 tbs of butter.  Let liquid reduce for 4 minutes, then add pasta and toss to combine.

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