Penne with Chicken, Asparagus, Mushrooms and Lemon

pasta with chicken, mushrooms and asparagus

This delicious dinner features asparagus, which is a vegetable packed with nutrients (Vitamins A, C, E and K) and antioxidants. Asparagus is also rich with glutathione, which helps break down harmful carcinogens and helps protect us against certain forms of cancer.

This meal can be completed in 30 minutes or less.  The amounts below make enough for two hearty portions, and enough leftovers for one lunch.  If you want, add some grated Parmesan cheese at the end, but it’s not necessary.

½ box dried Penne pasta
2 chicken cutlets, about ¾ lb.
1 small bunch asparagus
8 fresh cremini or white button mushrooms
1 medium shallot
Juice of ½ lemon
Kosher salt and pepper
Olive oil

Fill a 3-5 quart sauce pan with water, add about 1 t. salt, and heat on high.  Heat a large skillet on medium heat and add 2 T olive oil.

Dry the cutlets with paper towel, season with salt and pepper, and fry until lightly browned on both sides.  About 3-4 minutes per side.  Remove from the pan.

While the chicken is cooking, remove the stems from the mushrooms and cut into ¼” slices.

Break off the woody ends of the asparagus and discard (or save for vegetable stock, along with the mushroom stems).   Cut the asparagus into bite size pieces, about 1 inch.  Mince the shallot.

Add the sliced mushrooms and asparagus to the skillet, season with salt and pepper, and stir occasionally.  If the pan seems dry, add a little more olive oil.  After 3-4 minutes, add the shallots.

Cook the pasta as directed.

When the mushrooms have given up their moisture, and the pan is almost dry, add about ¾ cup pasta water to the pan, stir, and continue to cook.

Cut the chicken into bite size pieces.

Drain the pasta, reserving about ½ cup of the water.

Add the lemon juice to the mushroom, asparagus mixture.  Taste the sauce, and add salt and pepper to taste.  Add the chicken, accumulated juices, and pasta to the pan, stir, and cook for 1 more minute.  If the mixture is dry, add some of the reserved pasta water.

Remove pan from the heat.  Add cheese if desired and/or drizzle with a little more olive oil and serve.

By: Pete@BrightLife Direct
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