ml's Susannah Locketti: Here is a quick and easy chicken dinner your family will love. This dish whips up in ten minutes, looks pretty on the plate and can be made for under $10!
Smoky bacon is quickly browned, and boneless, skinless chicken breast is cooked in the small amount of fat left behind. The result is a rich-tasting dish bursting with flavor. The addition of petite peas adds color and fiber, while Parmesan finishes it off with great flavor!
1 lb. box linguine (boils in 7-8 minutes)
1/4 lb. raw bacon, chopped
1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breast, cubed
16 oz. bag frozen petite peas
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
While the pasta is boiling, heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat and brown the minced bacon. Remove the bacon and place on paper towels to drain. Meanwhile, season the chicken with black pepper and a small amount of salt. Cook in the hot bacon fat for a few minutes until done and set aside. In the last minute of the pasta boiling, add the bag of frozen peas and boil for a minute. Drain the pasta and pea mixture, add it back to the pot and top with the olive oil and chicken. Toss evenly with tongs. Serve topped with the Parmesan cheese and bacon crumbles.
Susannah's Time- & Money-Saving Sense:
I bought the chicken on sale for $1.99/lb. (Stock up when prices are low and freeze pieces in small quantities for quicker thawing.) Here's a little tip, too: Cutting semi-frozen chicken with a sharp knife makes cutting chicken into cubes faster and more precise. Raw chicken is slippery and harder to handle.
Using only 1/4 of the bacon allows you to freeze the rest for later recipes. When I buy bacon, I only use 1/4 of the pound at a time to add flavor and texture with the minimum quantity needed. Mincing it also saves on cooking time. Bacon is fatty, so using a small amount is a great way to enjoy it in moderation. I had this bacon on hand from my Easy Chicken Bacon & Egg Wedge Salad from a few weeks ago. I bought it on sale for only $1.99. This recipe will still fall under $10 if you have to pick it up. Feel free to substitute pancetta for bacon.
I used frozen peas, which have just as many nutrients as fresh. Frozen vegetables are usually less money than fresh, too. Feel free to add any other veggies you have on hand!
Linguine (on sale) -- $ .89
Bacon (on hand from a prior recipe) -- Free
Chicken (on sale) -- $1.99
Peas -- $1.50
Olive oil (on hand) -- Free
Parmesan cheese -- $1.59
Total Cost: $5.97
Copyright 2010 by Susannah Locketti