I had some tagliatelle in the fridge looking a wee bit forlorn as it contemplated a possible ultimate fate. So I thought that I would make something with chicken. You know how these things develop.
Some bacon pieces were on a higher fridge shelf and some fresh mushrooms were nestled by the last of the parmesan cheese. I could grate that over the top. There was some double cream (ho hum to weight gain). I could undertake a quick, invigorating and mild weight loss programme by walking the mile to the corner store to buy some low fat crème fraiche. Oh! how virtuous of me. So I did that and felt virtuous.
I had skinless chicken breasts (oh I am good!) and broad beans in the freezer together with some frozen petit pois. It is winter after all.
I checked out 8 internet recipes and cobbled this one together. I enjoy cobbling recipes and adding this and that depending on my sense of taste and what I actually have in my larder, freezer and fridge.
In the event the tagliatelle was very tasty. Even the hunter gatherer liked it and he professes a dislike for broad beans. But he hadn’t tasted this before! A glass of Chardonnay cleansed the palette between mouthfuls.
So this was my ingredient list:
4 chicken breasts or thighs thinly sliced lengthways. I used skinless but there is no need to. Ahem, chicken skin has a terrific taste.
50g chopped bacon. I buy bacon pieces by the kilo and divide into 5 packets. I keep one in the fridge and the rest in the freezer for when I run out.
6 medium mushrooms thinly sliced. I had closed cup white medium sized mushrooms. No reason why you wouldn’t use chestnut mushrooms – the added colour would be worth it.
1 tsp olive oil – probably a little more.
300g tagliatelle. Mine was fresh and needing to be used. I liked that the colour of the broad beans and peas would stand out against the creamy pasta.
175g frozen broad beans cooked and peeled
1 cup frozen peas cooked. I used petit pois – so sweet – why use any other?
85g reduced-fat crème fraîche
juice 1 lemon or bottled lemon juice. I am not fussy on this score.
4 tbsp parmesan powdered and 2 tbsp fresh parmesan finely grated
small handful flat parsley, chopped
I didn’t use any onion or garlic – unusual for me – because I wanted the lemon to be the only strength in back flavour. The parmesan sat on top of the dish and rightly so. The crème fraiche added to the slight tartness and the parsley just adds that something. Don’t use too much bacon in case it over powers the chicken. Mushrooms make me smile.
I have an induction hob and I am not sure about it; it is new and I have only been using it for a year. Steaming rice is not good on induction hobs. That may be colouring a jaundiced view from me. It is certainly easy to keep clean and the heat is instantaneous and it is more likely that I am still acclimatising to it.
Heat a frying pan to medium heat and add oil. Add the chicken and seasoning and cook, turning until browned, about 8-10mins. Add chopped bacon and sliced mushrooms and stir until cooked and coated with the oil and seasoning.
Put the tagliatelle in a large pot with salted boiling water and cook until al dente. Reserve 100ml of the cooking water and drain the tagliatelle.
Add the cooked tagliatelle, broad beans and petit pois to the pan containing the chicken mixture. Add the crème fraîche, lemon juice, 4 tbsp Parmesan and the reserved cooking water. Heat gently, season to taste, then stir in the parsley. Serve sprinkled with the remaining Parmesan and a liberal amount of olive oil. Grind some black pepper over the dish.