Chicken and Broccoli Pasta

Chicken and broccoli alfredo is something I used to like to order at Italian restaurants, mostly because a) my family is not a fan of cream-based cheesy sauces, and b) I didn’t really cook much until college, so I never made it myself until last summer. The recipe I tried back then wasn’t really all that great, so I probably won’t post it here.

Sometime last year, I randomly had some ingredients around, so I threw this together… and it was really good! One thing that I find I always change is whenever a recipe tells me to boil or bake chicken, I prefer to marinate it and pan fry it instead. It’s super easy, it gives the chicken extra flavor, and it keeps the chicken from getting disgusting dry.

Also, as far as I can remember, this was also the first time I tried making pasta in a rice cooker. [Although I didn’t put that in the original recipe because a) I wasn’t supposed to have a rice cooker in my dorm and b) that’s not how I normally cook pasta… in a dorm, cooking it in a rice cooker is easier because I can do it in my room.]

Of course cooking it in a rice cooker is not like cooking rice. You don’t just put in rice and water and hit cook. You fill the rice cooker with water and hit cook and wait for the water to boil. Once the water boils, you cook it just like you would in a pot on a stove.

Ingredients
1 pint heavy cream
1 8 oz. bag of grated parmesan cheese
2 cups broccoli florets
1 box farfalle pasta
2 chicken breasts
3-4 cloves garlic, chopped coarsely
salt, pepper, garlic powder
vegetable oil

Preparation
Bring a pot of salted water to a boil and cook pasta for 10-15 minutes or so until al dente. Drain and set aside in a large bowl.

Slice chicken breasts and marinate with vegetable oil, garlic powder, salt and pepper.

While the chicken is marinating, in a non-stick frying pan, heat 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil. Add about 1/3 of the garlic and saute until browned. Add broccoli, sprinkle lightly with salt, garlic powder and water, and cook until the broccoli is a vibrant green. Remove pan from heat and add broccoli to bowl with pasta.

Heat another 2 tablespoons of oil and add another 1/3 of the garlic and saute. When garlic begins to brown, add chicken in a single layer in the pan. Allow to cook on medium heat until the top side of the chicken begins to change color. Flip and brown the other side. Once thoroughly cooked, remove from pan and add to the bowl of pasta and chicken.

Pour heavy cream into the pan and bring to a slow boil. Simmer until cream thickens. Add 3/4 of the parmesan cheese and stir until it has all melted in. Season to taste with last 1/3 of garlic, salt, pepper, and garlic powder.

Pour sauce over pasta, chicken and broccoli. Add last 1/4 of cheese. Toss and you’re done!

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