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Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Gameday Grub

This is a post I started a while ago but never published.  But since we are heading to New Orleans for the Super Bowl, I thought it was great timing to post a delicious "cajun meal."  Cajun Chicken Pasta isn't the most traditional New Orleans dish, but it would be delicious to cook up while you're cheering on the 49ers next Sunday!   
This idea was inspired by one of my favorite cooking blogs, the Pioneer Woman. As many people know, I love browsing recipes for ideas and then making my own "version." Also-I should note that my measurement system is very much a guess.  I'm sorry to those of you who like to have exact measurements-it's just not my style!   This meal isn't easy on the waist line-but man was it yummy (and of course created before the new year).  Plus, it's okay to indulge every once in a while, right? 
Here's what you'll need:


  • 2-3 whole boneless, skinless chicken breasts (cut into cubes)
  • 1 pound smoked or andouille sausage (sliced into half moon shapes)
  • 3-4 teaspoons cajun spice mix (I made my own using Emeril's essence, cayenne, onion and garlic powder, oregano, thyme and salt and pepper)
  • 1 pound penne pasta
  • 2-3 tablespoons olive oil and butter
  • 1/2 a red, yellow and green bell pepper (seeded and sliced-you can definitely use one or all colors here) 
  • 1/2 yellow onion, sliced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 roma tomatoes, diced
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 1/2 cup Heavy Cream
  • a few dashes of hot sauce and worcestershire sauce
  • Sliced green onion (for garnish)
Here are all of the ingredients lined up for ya :)

Season your chicken with the cajun seasoning mix and then start browning in the olive oil and butter mixture.....

Then do the same with the sausage-(forgot a picture of that one) It might be even tastier to do that in reverse order.  The smoked sausage "drippings" will flavor the pan and will give your chicken an extra layer of deliciousness (just an after-thought).
Add all of your veggies and sweat them out until they are starting to soften but are still a little crisp. I would recommend adding the tomatoes towards the end (so they don't get too mushy) and seasoning with a little more cajun spice mix here too.....
Remove your veggies and add the chicken stock-whisking along the way until it's good and bubbly and reduced a bit too.  You want to pick up the good "stuff" on the bottom of the pan.  After it's reduced add the cream, along with a couple of dashes of hot sauce and worcestershire and let it bubble and thicken up.  Once your sauce looks, well, saucey- add everything (meat and veggies) back into the pan.
And it will look like this!
 Don't forget to boil your pasta in some salty water in the mean time and throw it all in too. Then-it will look like this! The pasta will also soak up some of the sauce at this point so it won't be as      liquid-y (is that a word?!).
Garnish with some scallions and put on your comfy pants!  YUM! 

Hope you all enjoy this as much as we did!  It's almost Super Bowl time, y'all!  Who's excited?!

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