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“A Chopped Challenge” Pappardelle With Chicken And Mushroom Ragu

January 11, 2013

Doesn’t this sound like a clever idea? Have friends over for dinner (Quinn and Len) and instead of the typical “bottle of wine” hostess gift,  they show up with ……..a paper bag. Yes, a bag….filled with a variety of ingredients to create a meal. I was told I could add a few items that were already in the house. (Who invited them???) This FuN {?} idea was designed for another evening. Sound familiar?? Yep, from the Food Network show Chopped. O.K., I’m up for the challenge!! Fortunately, there were no eels, black chickens or jelly beans!!! The bag consisted of white truffle olive oil, cream of truffles (I do NOT like truffles), pine nuts, fennel, sage, rosemary, and pappardelle. Really, it could be worse (I still don’t like truffles). I have chicken thighs, mushrooms, cream and misc. spices that I am going to combine for the entree!

I have to say this turned out to be a great “go to” week night dinner. I actually took a serving size to a smaller saute pan and added the truffle cream (2 teaspoons). If you enjoy that flavor, you would like the addition. If you like a creamier sauce, you could add a few tablespoons of cream. I think I would have made it to the dessert round without being CHOPPED with this dish!!!  ( I don’t want to play that game again!)

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Pappardelle with Chicken and Mushroom Ragu     (lightly adapted by Gourmet)

Serves 2-3

6 ounces cremini mushrooms

4 garlic cloves

1/4 cup olive oil      OR  *    (OPTIONAL)    ( 2 tablespoons olive oil/ 2 tablespoons truffle oil)

1 1/4 pounds skinless boneless chicken thighs, cut in to pieces

Salt and pepper

1 small onion, chopped

3/4 teaspoon chopped rosemary

3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

1/8 teaspoon fennel    *  (OPTIONAL)

1/8 teaspoon sage       *   (OPTIONAL)

1 (28 ounce) can whole tomatoes in juice (San Marzano)

1/2 pound dried pappardelle

2 cups baby arugula (or more to taste)

Pine nuts, toasted    *(OPTIONAL)

Parmesan, shaved

2 teaspoons truffle cream  *  (OPTIONAL)

Place mushrooms and garlic in a food processor until finely chopped. Heat oil in a heavy skillet over medium-high heat until it shimmers. Season chicken with salt and pepper, cook until golden, about 3 minutes. Transfer to a bowl. Reduce heat to medium and add onion until softened, about 3 minutes. Add mushroom mixture, rosemary, salt, pepper, and cook until brown, about 4 minutes. Add vinegar and cook until evaporated. Add chicken and tomatoes with juice, simmer until sauce is thickened, about 20 minutes. *(Stir in truffle cream or plain cream at this time, if desired). Cook pasta in a pot of  boiling salted water until al dente. Add pasta to sauce. Just before you are ready to serve, add arugula ( great flavor!) stir, plate and top with shaved parmesan.

This dish is delicious with an earthy, woodsy flavor that you may want to add to your week night repertoire.

* (OPTIONAL)   Ingredients in the “CHOPPED” challenge. Note: they actually all added a nice touch………(if you like truffles!!)

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4 Comments leave one →
  1. Sally permalink
    January 11, 2013 6:21 pm

    I can’t wait to try this! I DO love truffles & this sounds delish!

    • shreddedsprout permalink
      January 12, 2013 5:59 am

      Thanks Sally, I’ll send you the truffle oil!

  2. Robbie Boehme permalink
    January 12, 2013 8:12 am

    These photos are so beautiful. Shuffling off to truffle-o tonight!

    Robbie Boehme

    • shreddedsprout permalink
      January 12, 2013 9:55 am

      Thanks Robbie! Glad to know the leash is off tonight!

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