THREE-CHEESE CHICKEN PENNE FLORENTINE

Hopefully readers (the few that there are) don’t mind that I am posting a lot of recipes lately. I just love to share good recipes with friends! Last week Ryan and I doubled the receipe below so we could make some for us, and some for a good friend who was having surgery. It was delicious, and I’ve been talking about it ever since, so I decided to post the recipe. It was pretty easy to make, even though it did make a lot of dishes. The prep time took a little while, but it could be cut down by buying pre-sliced mushrooms – we used Baby Bellas. We also used a roasted whole chicken from the deli at Big Y. I’m sure you could make this vegetarian by eliminating the chicken, and substituting veggie broth for chicken broth. Enjoy!

Three-Cheese Chicken Penne Florentine

Fresh spinach, chicken, and a combination of cheeses make this dish comforting enough for the last days of winter yet fresh enough for the first days of spring. You also can cook the pasta mixture in individual eight-ounce ramekins; bake for 15 minutes.

Yield:8 servings (serving size: about 1 cup)

Ingredients

  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • Cooking spray
  • 3 cups thinly sliced mushrooms
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 cup chopped red bell pepper
  • 3 cups chopped fresh spinach
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 (16-ounce) carton 2% low-fat cottage cheese
  • 4 cups hot cooked penne (about 8 ounces uncooked tube-shaped pasta)
  • 2 cups shredded roasted skinless, boneless chicken breast
  • 1 cup (4 ounces) shredded reduced-fat sharp cheddar cheese, divided
  • 1/2 cup (2 ounces) grated fresh Parmesan cheese, divided
  • 1/2 cup 2% reduced-fat milk
  • 1 (10 3/4-ounce) can condensed reduced-fat, reduced-sodium cream of chicken soup, undiluted

Preparation

Preheat oven to 425°.

Heat olive oil in a large nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms, onion, and bell pepper; sauté 4 minutes or until tender. Add spinach, oregano, and black pepper; sauté 3 minutes or just until spinach wilts.

Place cottage cheese in a food processor; process until very smooth. Combine spinach mixture, cottage cheese, pasta, chicken, 3/4 cup cheddar cheese, 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, milk, and soup in a large bowl. Spoon mixture into a 2-quart baking dish coated with cooking spray. Sprinkle with remaining 1/4 cup cheddar cheese and remaining 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese. Bake at 425° for 25 minutes or until lightly browned and bubbly.

Cooking Light, MARCH 2006

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One Response to THREE-CHEESE CHICKEN PENNE FLORENTINE

  1. Katie says:

    I read this at work, and now I’m trying to think of a restaurant close enough to my office where I can go get this on my lunch break. It looks so freaking good!!!!!!!

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