This is my take on the classic Italian-American dish Chicken, Broccoli, and Ziti, which I’ve been craving lately for some reason. I changed it up and used whole wheat rigatoni instead of ziti and brussels sprouts leaves instead of broccoli since I’m going through a brussels sprouts thing right now. This was yummy! Tasted eerily like any mac & cheese I’ve ever made, yet there was no cheese….interesting. Anyway, try this! It was yum.
Chicken, Broccoli*, & Ziti*
Recipe by Just the Tip
Here’s what I used:
- 1 pound of chicken tenders, chopped into 1/2″ pieces
- 1 pound of whole wheat rigatoni
- 2 tbsp flour, plus some for dredging
- salt, pepper
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 4 tbsp butter, divided
- 1 large clove of garlic, peeled
- 2 cups fat-free half and half
- whole nutmeg
- 1 lb brussels sprouts
- parsley and parmesan cheese, for garnish
Here’s what I did:
- Bring a large pot of water up to boil. While waiting for that, remove the core of the brussels sprouts with a sharp paring knife. Separate the leaves and reserve.
- Heat 1 tbsp butter and 1 tbsp olive oil in a large, deep-sided saute pan. Dredge the chicken in flour, and then drop it into the saute pan, shaking off excess flour. Saute until browned on each side, 3-4 minutes per side.
- Once browned on both sides, remove to a plate.
- Once the water comes up to a boil, add a healthy pinch of salt and then add the brussels sprout leaves. Blanch for one minute and then remove with a spider or handheld strainer to another waiting plate or bowl. Bring the water back up to a boil. Once re-boiling, add the pasta and cook to package directions.
- Once you drop the pasta, start on the sauce. Over medium heat, melt the remaining 3 tbsp butter in the same saute pan that you cooked the chicken in. Grate in the garlic in with a handheld grater and saute for a minute or two. Sprinkle in 2 tbsp flour and whisk through, cooking for about a minute. Whisk in the half and half. Season with salt, pepper, and a little freshly grated nutmeg. Allow to thicken for 5 or so minutes over low heat.
- When the pasta is done, add the chicken, brussels leaves, and pasta into the sauce and toss to combine for a minute or so.
- Garnish with parmesan and chopped fresh parsley. Eat while wrapping Christmas presents in your favorite penguin wrapping paper, if desired.