Orecchiette Pasta with Chicken in a Creamy Rosemary Lemon Sauce

(originally made 3/2012)

This was another Pinterest find, both Jake and Tim love pasta in creamy sauces, so I thought I'd give it a go.   I only had a bag of Wacky Mac on hand and in the end, the colors helped the dish to be a little bit more attractive.    Next time I would put some color on the chicken before adding the lemon juice and I think it would add a little more texture to the dish.    We are not goat cheese fans, so I used a heaping tablespoon of ricotta.     I also added a few twists of fresh cracked black pepper to my plate.  Overall, the guys loved it and it was a nice addition to our menu.
Be sure to go check out the blog, Adventures in Cooking, I saw quite a few other recipes that I think would go over well here!

 Orecchiette Pasta with Chicken in a Creamy Rosemary Lemon Sauce

  Amount  Measure       Ingredient -- Preparation Method
--------  ------------  --------------------------------
  3                     Garlic Cloves -- minced (used jarred)
  1              Large  Chicken Breast -- cut into 1-inch cubes
                        Juice from 1 Lemon
  1                     and 1/2 Cups Dry Orecchiette Pasta -- (used wacky mac lol)
     2/3           Cup  Milk
     1/3           Cup  Chicken Broth
     1/4           Cup  Olive Oil
  1         Tablespoon  Goat Cheese -- (used ricotta)
  1         Tablespoon  Flour
  1         Tablespoon  Grated Parmesan -- Asiago, or Romano cheese (used shredded parm)
  2          Teaspoons  Fresh Rosemary -- chopped- used dried
     1/2      Teaspoon  Grated Lemon Rind
     1/2      Teaspoon  Salt
                        Water (for preparing the orecchiette)

Heat the olive oil and minced garlic in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the chicken breast pieces and lemon juice and allow to simmer, stirring occasionally, until the chicken is cooked all the way through, (this should be checked but cutting one of the larger cubes in half to peek inside). Remove the chicken from the pan using a slotted spoon so that the olive oil and garlic remain in the pan.

Lower the heat. Stir in the chicken broth, milk, grated lemon rind, salt, and 1 teaspoon of the rosemary. Once the mixture is hot, but not boiling, sprinkle the tablespoon of flour over the mixture and whisk it in. Continue whisking the sauce until the flour is fully incorporated and there aren't any flour chunks. Turn the heat to the lowest setting and allow to simmer, stirring occasionally, while you prepare the pasta.

Prepare the orecchiette pasta according to the package directions. I recommend adding a teaspoon of olive oil and 1/2 teaspoon of salt to the water you boil the pasta in. While the pasta is cooking, add the chicken pieces and goat cheese to the lemon sauce and stir until the goat cheese is completely melted and incorporated into the mixture. Remove the pan from the heat and set it aside. Once the orecchiette is cooked all the way through, strain it and drizzle some olive oil over it, stirring it a bit in the strainer, to help keep the pasta from getting stuck to each other.

Pour the orecchiette into a large bowl and add the lemon sauce and chicken, garnish with the grated Parmesan, Romano, or Asiago cheese and the remaining teaspoon of rosemary. Serve immediately



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