Tonight's dish was created around 1 thing - pine nuts (pignoli). I'm not sure why, but for the last couple of days, I've been craving pine nuts. I mean, it's not like they're really a delicacy or overly flavorful on their own - but nonetheless, I had to have them. So, I went browsing the store with pignoli dreams and came up with a fairly simple pasta dish that is big on flavor - and incorporates those crunchy yet creamy little nuts.
6 oz. chicken breast, cut into bite sized pieces
3 Tbsp. olive oil
1/4 c. sundried tomatoes
1/2 c. marinated artichoke hearts
3 Tbsp. pesto (see recipe below)
1/4 c. pine nuts
wedge of lemon (about 1/4)
parmesan shavings for garnish, if desired
salt & pepper
6 oz. whole-grain angel hair pasta
Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Season chicken with salt & pepper and add to pan. Cook just until no longer pink. Add sundried tomatoes, artichoke hearts, pesto and pine nuts. Cover and simmer over low heat.
Meanwhile, cook pasta 6-7 minutes until al dente. Drain and add to chicken/pesto mixture. Squeeze lemon wedge over the top of everything, stir and cook 1-2 minutes until pasta reaches desired doneness.
Top with parmesan shavings before serving, if desired.
(Makes about 3/4 c.)
2 cloves garlic
1/3 c. toasted pignoli (pine nuts)
1/2 c. grated parmesan cheese
2 oz. basil leaves
1/4-1/3 c. olive oil
salt, if needed
Mince garlic in a food processor. Add pignoli and pulse several times until well chopped. Add parmesan cheese and basil leaves and set processor on low, drizzling in olive oil until desired consistency is reached. Add salt to taste, if needed.