Call it Cajun chicken pasta, jambalaya pasta, or blackened chicken pasta, but this is one of the dishes I tend to gravitate towards when we go out to eat. There’s just something about the combination of spicy, creamy, and calorific that calls to me. I’m sure you understand.
Until now, I’ve been content to just eat it when we go out, but I kept wondering if I could find an easier (and healthier) way to make it at home. What was preventing me from making it was the sauce. I have no idea how to make a sauce from scratch, make a roux, or whatever else you need to know. Sadly, this is also the reason why I’ve never ventured to make macaroni and cheese from scratch, but that’s for another time.
Luckily, I got some help! The folks at Progresso were giving out samples of their new Recipe Starters cooking sauces and dishing up treats using them at BlogHer Food 2012. We got samples of our own to try out and I sweet-talked my way into a couple more after I realized I could use these to help me recreate Cajun chicken pasta at home.
With the sauce part taken care of, it’s pretty easy to put together the rest of the dish — red, yellow, and green bell peppers, scallions, chicken breast, smoked turkey sausage, whole wheat pasta, and a whole lot of Cajun seasoning.
Make the sauce while the pasta is cooking, and this all goes together pretty quickly. Soon you’ll be able to enjoy Cajun chicken pasta without having to leave home!
Cajun Chicken Pasta
2 tbsp. canola oil
1/2 lb. chicken breast, sliced
1/2 lb. smoked turkey sausage
1/3 each red, yellow, green bellpeppers, sliced
1/4 large red onion, sliced
1 scallion, sliced
1/2 cup each Fire Roasted Tomato and Creamy Roasted Garlic Progresso Recipe Starters
2 tbsp. white flour
2-3 tbsp. Cajun seasoning, plus more to taste
1/2 lb. uncooked whole wheat penne or pasta of your choice
1. Bring large pot of water to a boil, then add pasta and cook according to package directions. Drain water when pasta is cooked and set pasta aside.
2. While pasta is cooking, heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. When oil is hot, add chicken and sprinkle with half the Cajun seasoning. When chicken is mostly cooked, add smoked turkey sausage. Once chicken is cooked, remove chicken and sausage to a bowl and set aside.
3. Add the red onions, peppers, and 1/2 the scallion slices to the skillet and saute in remaining oil until vegetables begin to soften. Remove to bowl and set aside.
4. Add the cooking sauces to the skillet along with the flour. Stir mixture constantly until the sauces begin to thicken. Add remaining Cajun seasoning.
5. Add the vegetables and meat to the sauce mixture and combine to mix thoroughly. Now add in the drained pasta and continue to stir so that pasta is evenly coated with sauce. Taste for seasoning and adjust as needed. Sprinkle remaining scallion slices over the top.