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Pesto chicken pasta
SERVES: 6 | PREP TIME: 20 MINS | COOK TIME: 20 MINS
- 650 g chicken thighs
- 400 g spiral pasta
- 1 cup vegetable stock hot
- 2 teaspoons cornflour
- 1 leek white and pale green part only, thinly sliced
- ½ bunch silverbeet thinly sliced (stalks and leaves, but kept separate)
- ½ bag frozen peas
- ½ cup sour cream
- ¼ cup milk
- 190 g jar basil pesto
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- Bring a very large pot of salted water to the boil.
- Pat chicken dry with paper towels and season with salt. Heat a drizzle of oil in a large fry pan on high heat. Cook chicken, in batches, for 3-4 minutes each side, until browned (they do not have to be cooked through). Remove from pan and set aside on a plate, covered.
- While chicken is cooking, cook pasta as per packet instructions. In a small bowl, combine hot stock and cornflour until dissolved.
- Heat a drizzle of oil in same pan used for chicken on medium-high heat. Cook leek and silverbeet stalks for 3-4 minutes, until softened. Add 1-2 tablespoons water in the last 30 seconds to help vegetable steam. Roughly chop chicken.
- Stir through stock/cornflour mixture, silverbeet leaves, peas, sour cream, milk, basil pesto, salt and chicken, along with any resting juices. Bring to a simmer and cook on medium for 2-3 minutes until chicken is just cooked through.
- Drain pasta well and return to pot, along with chicken and sauce. Toss to combine and season to taste with salt and pepper.
- To serve, divide chicken pesto pasta between bowls.
- *To make basil pesto place 1½ cups packed basil leaves, ½ cup flat-leaf parsley (leaves and stalks), ½ clove garlic finely chopped, ¼ cup toasted pine nuts (optional), ¼ cup grated parmesan in a food processor and blitz to combine, while slowly drizzling in 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil. Season to taste with 1-2 tablespoons lemon juice, salt and freshly ground black pepper. The pesto will keep in the fridge for a few days or can be frozen in a sealed ziplock bag for a few months. Makes 1 cup.