Pasta with Cajun Blush Sauce, Grilled Pesto Chicken Strips and Chicken Andouille Sausage

It was yummy and I used basil from my back yard to prepare the fresh pesto.

Fresh Pesto:

I guess about 5 cups loosely packed basil leaves

2 oz of triple cream sheep Feta cheese /or grated pecorino

4 oz of grated manchego cheese

Couple squeezes of lemon juice

1 Tbls of balsamic vinegar

Enough olive oil to make a nice loose paste

¼ cup Pepita’s & almonds

Onion powder to taste

Garlic powder to taste

Fresh ground pepper to taste.

I also added a touch of honey to mine.

Put all of this in a food processor and make a paste add olive as needed. I used a greek olive oil that had a really grassy flavor. Use your favorite olive oil.

Pesto can also be made out of cilantro or a mixture of basil, oregano, spinach, parsley, just let your imagination go wild and experiment with herb and greens. You can also experiment with different olive oils from different countries which will give the pesto a different flavor.

Pesto is also very good to freeze. Caution-do not freeze basil leaves without some kind of oil covering it, it will turn black and nasty looking.

Every terroir give the olives a different bouquet and flavor. So experiment, have fun!!!

For the Cajun Blush Sauce:

1 cup pre-made spaghetti sauce, you a good quality one-I like Bertolli, but you can use your brand. NO RAGU though.

2 cups of light whipping cream

Cajun spice to taste.

Cook for about 15 minutes on low to reduce just a bit.

Cut 4- 4-6 oz chicken breasts into stripes and marinate them in about ½ cup pesto for 30 minutes. Sauté marinated chicken strips in a hot skillet until cooked through but don’t overcook. Remove from skillet and add chicken andouille (4 sausages), that you have sliced on the bias , sauté just until heated through.

Use your favorite pasta cooked according to the package, add the cooked meats, sauce with Cajun Blush Sauce and serve!

Garnish with fresh basil leaves.

Tips: Fresh pasta from the deli case will make this dish even more special!

Till next time ya’ll!

Chef Kadie Hicks

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