Grilled Chicken Rigatoni Florentine
This dish is Italian-inspired comfort food at its finest. It’s a long recipe, but the results are well worth the effort. Although the concept is simple, it’s largely made from scratch. You could certainly substitute more pre-packaged ingredients, but the result won’t be the same.
- 8 chicken breasts, boneless and skinless
- 1 1/2 lb Dry rigatoni
- 16 oz Frozen spinach, thawed
- 16 oz Heavy whipping cream
- 4 cups Milk, 2%
- 8 oz Sour cream
- 1 cup Italian three-cheese blend (Parmesan, Asiago & Romano)
- 2 Tbsp Butter, unsalted
- 2 Tbsp Canola or vegetable oil
- 2 Tbsp All-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 Tbsp Garlic, minced
- 2 tsp Garlic salt
- 2 tsp Kosher salt
- 1 tsp Black pepper, ground fresh
- 1/2 tsp White pepper
- Dash Cayenne
- Dash Nutmeg
- Season both sides of the chicken evenly with the garlic salt and the black pepper.
- Set aside and let sit 30 minutes at room temperature.
- Start your grill and prepare for direct cooking at medium-high heat (400-450º).
- Cook the pasta per the package directions until it is just shy of al dente, then drain it well.
- Note: You want the pasta a little underdone because it will finish cooking when it’s baked.
- While the pasta is cooking, brush the chicken with one tablespoon of the canola/vegetable oil and grill it over direct heat for three minutes per side.
- Remove the chicken to a plate and set aside.
- Pour the thawed spinach on top of the draining pasta and stir to allow it to drain simultaneously.
- Preheat your oven to 350º.
- Heat a large sauce pan over medium-high heat.
- Add the butter and the other tablespoon of canola/vegetable oil and let heat 30 seconds.
- Add the flour and whisk constantly to make a roux. You want a blonde roux, so cook it until it just starts to give off a nutty aroma.
- Add the cream to the pan and bring just to a slight boil, whisking constantly.
- Add the milk, salt, garlic, white pepper, cayenne and nutmeg to the pan and bring back to a slight boil, whisking constantly.
- Add the cheese and sour cream to the pan and bring it back to a simmer, whisking constantly.
- Remove the sauce from the heat.
- Note: The sauce will be a little thin, but that’s intentional, as it will thicken when baked with the pasta.
- Slice the chicken to 1/4” and add put it in a large mixing bowl.
- Add the pasta and spinach to the bowl.
- Add the sauce to the bowl and fold to combine all of the ingredients.
- Pour the pasta mixture into a very large baking dish.
- Cover the baking dish with foil, and bake 40 minutes.
- Plate the pasta with shaved Parmesan.
Recipe from patioaddiobbq, via prettygirlfood