Sunday, April 17, 2011

Creamy Chicken Marsala Pasta

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Article first published as Creamy Chicken Marsala Pasta on Blogcritics.
Do you ever look in your pantry and have an ingredient that you tend to use for the same dish every single time? When it comes to Marsala wine, my go to dish is naturally Chicken Marsala. I've made a few different versions but this Creamy Chicken Marsala Pasta is the most favorite of my husband. The creamy Marsala sauce with caramelized mushrooms and onions really make it even more comforting. It's a dish you can make during the week for family and it's even good enough for company...

For this recipe, I adapted it from the original by adding caramelized onions. The natural sweetness of onions once caramelized really gave the dish a nice depth of flavor and melded well with mushrooms and wine. That was the only change and a tasty one at that! I also found that using whole wheat pasta tastes better with this dish. The nuttiness of the pasta plays off the flavors in the dish and is a great way to get your family on board if you're not particularly a fan of whole wheat pasta. Try it - it works!

Creamy Chicken Marsala Pasta
recipe adapted from America's Test Kitchen 

 2 large boneless, skinless chicken breasts; cut into bite sized pieces
10-12 ounces sliced mushrooms
1 small onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
3/4 cup Marsala cooking wine
1/2 cup chicken broth
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 pound dry pasta + water for cooking (I used penne, rigatoni is also good)
1 cup Parmesan cheese + more for serving
5 tablespoons unsalted butter
salt and pepper to taste
minced, chopped fresh parsley for garnish

Makes: 4-6 servings

Season chicken with salt and pepper. Melt 1 tablespoon butter in a large skillet until foaming. Cook chicken until lightly browned. Transfer to plate when done.

Boil water and cook pasta according to the directions.

Melt additional 1 tablespoon of butter in skillet, add garlic, mushrooms and onion and cook for about 6 minutes. Add cooked chicken back into the skillet. Add the Marsala, chicken broth and cream and bring to a boil. Simmer until sauce is is slightly thickened.

Drain pasta and reserve 1/2 cup cooking water. Return the pasta  to the pot with the remaining 3 tablespoons of butter. Add the mushrooms and chicken mixture and 1/2 cup of Parmesan cheese and cook until the pasta has absorbed some of the sauce, about 1 minute, adding the reserved cooking water as needed.

Season with salt and pepper and serve with additional Parmesan cheese and a garnish of chopped parsley.

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