Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Penne with Chicken, Tomato & Two Cheeses

I got this recipe out of a cookbook the company I work for put together many years ago; it was given to me as the company gift when I first started working there. I have yet to try a recipe I didn't like from it. In fact the hot fudge sauce I wrote about before is from this same cookbook. This pasta recipe is very easy although it does take quite a bit of time to cook down so be prepared for that! We had to have a snack while it was cooking because I didn't start it early enough.

Penne with Chicken, Tomatoes and Two Cheese
Serves 4

6 T olive oil
1 1/2 c chopped onion
1 t garlic, minced
3 28oz cans Italian plum tomatoes, drained (I used the diced variety so they didn't need to be drained)
2 t dried basil
1 1/2 t crushed red pepper
3 c low salt chicken broth
1 lb penne pasta
3 chicken breasts, cooked & chopped
2 1/2 c grated Havarti cheese (this is kind of expensive, next time I plan to use Mozzarella)
1/3 c sliced black olives (I omitted these)
1/3 c grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 c finely chopped fresh basil (we didn't use this either)

Heat 3 T olive oil in heavy large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add onion & garlic; saute until onion is translucent.

Mix in tomatoes, dried basil & crushed red pepper. Bring to a boil, breaking up tomatoes with back of spoon. Add broth; bring to a boil. Reduce heat tol medium; simmer until mixture thickens and is reduced to about 7 cups (no idea how you would know this!) stirring occasionally - about 1 hour 10 minutes.

Preheat oven to 375.

Cook pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water until al dente. Drain well. Return pasta to same pot; toss with 3 T olive oil. Stir together pasta and sauce; add chicken and toss to blend. Mix in Havarti cheese. Transfer to 9x13 glass baking dish (mine didn't all fit into a 9x13 pan so I also used a round casserole dish). Sprinkle with olives and then Parmesan cheese.

Bake 30 minutes. Sprinkle with fresh basil.

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