Man, that’s a long recipe title right?  And it’s really still missing a few components like the grilled chicken and broccoli, but I didn’t think it needed a full paragraph for a title.  This is an old recipe from the archives that I recently rediscovered, and I enjoyed it so much I though it deserved a second go-round.  It’s easy enough to throw together pasta with some cheese, protein and veggies and get a pretty decent meal out of it.  I really love this meal though because all the components combine to make something really special.  The roasted garlic provides a ton of rich flavor to the sauce without making it heavy.  This meal is very adaptable – quick enough for a weeknight, but nice enough for company.  Just make sure to plan ahead and roast the garlic in advance!

Ingredients

8 oz. tube shaped pasta, such as penne
1½ tbsp. butter
¼ cup roasted garlic paste*
1½ tbsp. flour
¼ cup dry white wine
1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
1 cup shredded white cheddar cheese
1 head of broccoli, cut into florets and blanched until crisp-tender
1 boneless, skinless chicken breast, grilled and cut into bite size pieces
Salt and pepper, to taste

*To make roasted garlic paste, peel the outer papery skins off two heads of garlic, leaving the heads still intact.  Slice about a quarter off the top of each head so that all of the cloves are partly exposed.  Wrap the heads in foil and bake at 350˚ F for one hour.  Remove from the oven and let cool.  Once cool enough to touch, squeeze the garlic cloves out of the peels and smash with a fork to make roasted garlic paste.

Directions

  • 01

    Bring a large pot of salted water to boil.  Cook the pasta until al dente according to the package directions.

  • 02

    Meanwhile, in a large skillet or saucepan set over medium heat, melt the butter.  Once the butter is melted, whisk in the roasted garlic paste and cook just until fragrant, 30-60 seconds.  Whisk the flour into the mixture and cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture begins to turn golden brown, 1-2 minutes.  Stir the white wine and broth into the pan.  Bring to a simmer and cook, stirring frequently, until slightly thickened, about 2 minutes.  Whisk in the cheddar and stir until melted.  Season the sauce with salt and pepper to taste.

  • 03

    Mix in the broccoli florets and chicken pieces, and cook just until heated through.  Mix in the cooked pasta until evenly coated with the sauce. Serve warm.

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