Asparagus and Bacon Cream Pasta

Asparagus and Bacon Cream PastaAccording to Food History asparagus has a long history as far back as the first century. There are records of it growing in ancient Greece and Rome. History even records Egyptians over 2,000 years ago cultivated asparagus for medicinal reasons (Kitchen Project)

Of course most eatable plants were first discovered growing wild, and asparagus is no exception. A wild asparagus has thin shoots thinner than a pencil and is much different than the asparagus that we find in the market.

Nutrition facts asparagusThrough selective breeding and growing techniques, a modern non wild asparagus has a thicker stem with more edible flesh.

Asparagus is even a low carbohydrate food, and a 15 on the glycemic index, which is the rating of plant food and how it effects your blood glucose or insulin in the body (0-35 is low).

Now for our featured recipe, and here is what you will need.

 

8 slices thick-cut bacon, chopped

1 pound fresh asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1″ pieces

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 lb pasta (your choice)

2 cups Alfredo sauce (homemade or your favorite store bought brand)

Himalayan salt

black pepper

Cook pasta according to package directions. Reserve 1/2 cup of pasta water before draining. Return the pasta to the pan that you cooked it in, and set aside.

Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Cook the bacon until browned, but not crispy. Remove and place on paper towel lined plate to drain.

Remove all but 2 tablespoons of grease from the skillet, and return to the stove. Add the chopped asparagus to the pan, stirring occasionally. Cook until tender, about 7 minutes. Add the garlic to the skillet, and cook for 1 minute more.

Add the cooked asparagus, garlic, bacon, and Alfredo sauce to the pot of cooked pasta. Toss to combine. If the sauce is too thick, add a bit of the saved pasta water to thin it out. Season to taste with Himalayan salt and pepper before serving (optional).

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Chicken and Goat Cheese Spinach Pasta

Chicken and Goat Cheese Spinach Pasta

All products made from wheat flour will have the same glycemic index, whole grains include the bran component, which contains additional dietary fiber and B-vitamins. Also there is 7 to 12 grams of protein in whole wheat pasta. Protein is a needed daily to live well, making whole wheat pasta a better choice.

Our featured recipes has goat cheese that is about 7.21 g of fat, but it also has 5.88 g of protein. Remember, protein is needed to keep the body active and to make a repair muscle tissue. If you are active you will burn the fat. Also the monocular structure of the fat in goat’s milk is smaller than in cow’s milk, making goat cheese easer to digest. If you are lactose intolerant, goat milk is the way to go.

The recipe also calls for poultry, which is full of iron, zinc and vitamin B12.

So here is what you will need:

ingredients for Chicken and Goat Cheese Spinach Pasta

Also you will need 6 tablespoons of olive oil, divided. Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Cook the Penne pasta according to the packaged instructions. Over medium high heat in a large frying pan, heat 3 tbsp. olive oil.  Add garlic and sauté until lightly browned.  Remove from heat.  Stir in flour and salt.  Slowly whisk in milk, chicken broth; whisk constantly so no lumps form.  Return to heat, whisk in parmesan cheese, basil, oregano and black pepper. Set aside.

whisking milk ,chicken broth, cheeses and spices for Chicken and Goat Cheese Spinach Pasta

In a large skillet over medium high heat, add olive oil. Once heated add diced onions and sauté; then add chicken breast chunks, cook until pink is gone.

frying chicken and onions for Chicken and Goat Cheese Spinach Pasta

Next add spinach but do not stir in. Cover pan with lid. Turn heat to low and cook until spinach is wilted. Mix in spinach.

Grease a 9 x 13-inch baking dish.  Spread a third of the cheese mixture in the bottom of the dish.  Top with a third of the pasta, then a third of the chicken/spinach mixture, Repeat twice.

preparing Chicken and Goat Cheese Spinach Pasta first layer

Once you have prepared the pasta dish to bake, sprinkle additional parmesan cheese on top if you wish too.

Chicken and Goat Cheese Spinach Pasta prepared to cook

Place into oven and bake uncovered for 35 minutes. When done let stand 5 to 10 minutes. Plate and serve.

Chicken and Goat Cheese Spinach Pasta

Chicken and Goat Cheese Spinach Pasta

8 oz. penne pasta, whole wheat

6 tbsp. olive oil, divided

2 cloves garlic, minced

5 tbsp. flour

½ tsp. salt

1 ½ cups milk

1 ½ cups chicken broth

¾ cup Parmesan, grated

½ tsp. basil, dried

¼ tsp. oregano, dried

¼ tsp. black pepper

1 medium onion, diced

3 chicken breasts, large; cut into 1-inch chunks

12 oz. baby spinach, fresh

1 ½ cups mozzarella, shredded

12 oz. goat cheese

Heat oven to 350 degrees

Cook pasta according to package instructions.

Over medium high heat in a large frying pan, heat 3 tbsp. olive oil.  Add garlic and sauté until lightly browned.  Remove from heat.  Stir in flour and salt.  Slowly whisk in milk, chicken broth; whisk constantly so no lumps form.  Return to heat, whisk in parmesan cheese, basil, oregano and black pepper. Set aside.

In a large skillet over medium high heat, add olive oil. Once heated add onion and sauté; then add chicken breast chunks, cook until pink is gone. Next add spinach but do not stir in. Cover pan with lid. Turn heat to low and cook until spinach is wilted. Mix in spinach.

Grease a 9 x 13-inch baking dish.  Spread a third of the cheese mixture in the bottom of the dish.  Top with a third of the pasta, then a third of the chicken/spinach mixture, Repeat twice.  Sprinkle additional parmesan cheese on top if desired.

Bake uncovered for about 35 minutes.  Let stand 10 minutes before serving.

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