I made this for dinner yesterday, and it was memorable in every way. It’s a highly-perfumed dish of chicken, mushrooms, onion, and garlic, all bathed in a red wine-and-cream sauce, and spooned over gluten-free pasta. Here’s the simple step-by-step:
Note: Who’s the “Garibaldi” in Penne Rigate Garibaldi? I haven’t a clue. My quick Wiki search turned up zilch. If you have the answer, then by all means talk to me in the comments field below!
Update: Reader Linda solved the mystery: Garibaldi was one of the “Founding Fathers” of Italy. He was a General turned Politician
and was a force in the Unification of Italy in the mid 1800′s.
While you wait for the water to boil, grab a couple of chicken breasts. If the breasts are particularly thick, cut them lengthwise in half with a sharp knife.
Turn up the heat, take a deep breath, and tip 3/4 cup Marsala wine into the mixture. As the wine hits the pan, it will immediately release an intoxicating perfume. Cook until the wine reduces by half — about 5 minutes.
Note: Marsala wine is dreadful for drinking. But it’s delicious for cooking!
Then add 1 1/2 cups unsalted chicken stock (click here for my homemade version), and let the liquid bubble for about 4 minutes. Ah, more perfume.
While humming this fun tune, stir in 3/4 cup heavy cream (yes — heavy cream!). Let it bubble until the sauce thickens — about 3 minutes.
Now drop 16 ounces of pasta into the pot of furiously boiling water.
Which pasta? Well, Rigatoni is traditional.
A short rant: Why can’t the sellers of gluten-free pasta package their products in the same sizes as their non-gluten-free counterparts? I mean, traditional pasta is commonly sold by the pound, or 16 ounces. But not gluten-free pastas! They are packaged in 12-ounce boxes and bags. Thus I had to purchase 2 bags, and ended up with half a bag leftover.
In any event, cook the pasta until al dente — firm to the tooth. My gluten-free penne was ready in 10 minutes. Drain thoroughly.
Here’s the copy-and-paste:
Penne Rigate Garibaldi
Kevin Lee Jacobs’s version of a classical Italian dish
Ingredients for 4 servings
1 tablespoon butter
1-2 tablespoons olive oil
2 chickens breasts (about 1 1/2 lbs total), diced into 1/2-inch pieces
1 small-to-medium yellow onion, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
8 ounces sliced white mushrooms
1 generous teaspoon Italian Seasoning
1/2 teaspoon salt
Grinds of black pepper
3/4 cup Marsala wine
1 1/2 cups unsalted chicken stock
3/4 cup heavy cream
16 ounces Penne Rigate or Rigatoni pasta (gluten-free will work)
Freshly shredded Parmesan cheese
Garnish: freshly minced flat-leaved Parsley
Bring 4 quarts of salted water to a boil.
In a large skillet, heat the butter and oil over a medium flame. Add the diced chicken, and cook, stirring frequently, until browned — about 7 minutes.
Stir in the onion, cover the skillet, and lower the heat. Cook until the onion is soft and translucent — about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Return the heat to “medium,” and add the mushrooms, Italian seasoning, salt and pepper, and Marsala wine. Cook until the wine reduces by half — about 5 minutes. Add the chicken stock, and let it boil for about 5 minutes. Stir in the heavy cream, and cook and stir until the sauce thickens — about 3 minutes. Keep warm.
Cook the pasta until al dente. If you are using gluten-free Penne Rigate, the cooking time will be 10 minutes. Drain well.
To serve, divide the pasta between 4 plates. Top with the chicken sauce and shredded Parmesan cheese, and, if you wish, a sprinkle of parsley. Delicious with a hunk of crusty sour dough boule, and goblets of a good, full-bodied Italian or French red wine.
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