Gemelli pasta with, fennel, grilled chicken and prosciutto
· 1# gemelli pasta cooked according to directions on box
· 1/4 cup of xtra virgin olive oil divided
· 1 large fennel bulb or 2 small, stalks and core removed. Then thinly slice.
· 1/8 lb. prosciutto thinly sliced and then diced.
· 8 oz. button mushrooms sliced
· 2 cloves garlic minced
· 1 cup grape tomatoes halved
· 2 cups baby spinach
· 1 to 2 cups of chicken stock
· 1/2 cup romano cheese
· For grilled chicken
· 4 boneless chicken breasts
· 1/4 olive oil
· 2 cloves of garlic minced
· 1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
· kosher salt and fresh ground pepper to taste
Marinate chicken breasts in oil, garlic, balsamic vinegar and salt and pepper. Marinate for atleast 1 hour. Grill until cooked through. Discard marinade.
Cook off gemelli, rince with cold water to stop the cooking process. When cool Add back to pasta pot.
For the sauce:
Saute fennel in 3 tablespoons of the olive oil. It will start to brown around the sides, add mushrooms to pan, cook for about 3 to 4 minutes.
Add the rest of the olive oil if needed. Add prosciutto, continue cooking for 2 minutes.
Add garlic and the grape tomatoes cook about 2 minutes more.
Add about 1 cup of the chicken stock to the pan, stirring up all the bits that have stuck to the bottom of the pan.
Let it come to a boil, and add spinach. Spinach should cook down quickly. Stir it in.
The chicken stock is your sauce, whats in the pan will have reduced add another 1/2 to 1 cup.
Season with kosher salt and fresh pepper.
Stir sauce into the gemelli in the pasta pot and put back on the medium high burner.
Slice the grilled chicken, add to the pasta pot along with all the chicken juices. Keep stirring.
Add 1/2 of the romano cheese. Taste for seasoning, add more S and P if needed. Either add the rest of the romano or serve on the side.