Fettucini w/ Parmesan Crusted Chicken & Seasonal Vegetables
500 grams fresh fettucini
1 winter squash (butternut squash)
pinch of cayenne
to taste parsley, chopped
to taste salt and pepper
4 portobello mushrooms
2 red peppers
10-12 garlic cloves, peeled
9 basil leaves
500 ml cream
2 to 4 chicken breasts, organic
100 g parmesan
4 eggs, beaten
Preheat oven to 450 F. Start with the squash; peel it and cut in two to scrape out seeds before cutting into bite-sized pieces. In a bowl, mix the squash with some olive oil and salt/pepper with a dash of cayenne pepper and chopped parsley. Spread on a tray and roast until light brown for about 10 minutes. Let cool.
Scrape the gills out of the underside of the portobellos and slice them into strips. Wash the red peppers and cut them in half, removing both the seeds and white ribbing, before cutting them into strips. This is known as a julienne cut, and we’ll use the same for the leeks. Cut the white of the leek lengthwise and give it a good rinse to remove any dirt; then cut into 10-cm pieces and next into julienned strips.
(Set aside scraps in a pot, add water and salt, bring it to a boil and let simmer for 20 minutes for a nice vegetable stock. Season as you wish.)
To keep things fresh, we make the sauce while we cook the pasta, but we need to have the garlic roasted. Roll the garlic cloves with some olive oil, salt and pepper and wrap tightly in tin foil. Pop into the oven at 200 F for an hour until cloves are brown and soft; the sweet scent will let you know it’s done. Mash with a fork and set aside. Chop up six of your basil leaves and save the rest for garnish.
We like to cook by feel and aim for just shy of al dente. When the water boils, in goes the fettucini. It’s ready when it feels soft, but still firm. Strain and quickly cool with cold water. Add a touch of oil and massage to keep the pasta from sticking.
Preheat the oven to 475 F and have an oven-proof pan on hand. Slice the chicken breast open lengthwise and put some flour on a plate; gently press the chicken into it and season with salt and pepper on both sides.
Mix the parmesan with the eggs.
Heat up your pan, add some oil and sear the chicken on one side until golden brown. Turn and sear the other side for 30 seconds.
Spread the parmesan egg mixture over the chicken until covered. Put the pan into the oven for about 5 minutes. The chicken is done when the crust is golden brown.
Bringing it together:
Take the biggest pan out of the cupboard (or two if you don’t think one will suffice.)
Sautee the veggies for about 2 minutes, add the roasted garlic and chopped basil. followed by a splash of your home made vegetable stock. Add the cream and let it reduce a little. Add the pasta and let cook for another 2 minutes; if it gets too thick, add some more stock. Season with salt and pepper.
Take the chicken out of the oven, cut in half to see if it is fully cooked. Divide the pasta over four plates. Arrange the parmesan crusted chicken on top and serve. Garnish with additional shredded basil as desired.