There are two words that will always make my heart flutter: ITALIAN and HEALTHY. I recently discovered this great food site called Julia’s Healthy Italian and was immediately inspired to try out one of her recipes. The thing I liked most about her recipes is that they were so simple. I don’t mean any disrespect to simplicity here, because simple can be a very beautiful thing. And in this case, this recipe was just that — beautifully simple.
What really makes this dish stellar is the fresh pasta. Now folks, I have never owned a pasta machine in my life and to be frank, I don’t know if I ever will own one. We made this pasta by using good ol’ fashioned elbow grease. It didn’t take long to prepare and the fresh pasta turned out even better than we had hoped! Thin and chewy in all of the right places. Yummy.
Because the pasta does not take long to cook, I had Mister prep the noodles while I started the chicken side of things. If I were cooking this dish alone, I would still prepare the noodles first, just in case my dough needed to rest at all. I recommend tossing your fresh pasta into a pot of salted, boiling water as soon as you turn your chicken over.
3 beefsteak tomatoes, chunked or one 28-ounce can plum tomatoes cut in half, juice discarded
2 tablespoons capers
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley or 2 tablespoons dried parsley
1 chicken bouillon cube
1/4 cup dry white or Marsala cooking wine
pepper to taste
1 teaspoon of crushed red pepper flakes (if you like a little heat)
For the pasta:
2 cups flour (I used 1 cup all-purpose and 1 cup wheat flour)
1/4 teaspoon salt
water, as needed
For the pasta:
Blend together flour, eggs and salt. Add water, one tablespoon at a time, until dough comes together but is not sticky. Check after each tablespoon to see if dough has firmed. I used about 5 or 6 tablespoons. You'll need more if your flour is older.
Roll dough as thin as you can with a rolling pin. If dough starts to spring back when rolled, let the dough rest for ten minutes and try again.
Roll the flat sheet of dough into a jelly roll. Using a very sharp knife, trim the edges and slice the roll into small rounds (as wide as you want your noodles to be). Unroll the rounds into long noodles and toss them with flour on a baking sheet to dry or cook immediately. Fresh noodles will take about 4 minutes to cook. They are done when they float to the top of the water. Makes two medium-sized portions of pasta.
For the chicken:
In a large pan, sauté the onions in oil on medium for about 8 minutes or until the onions are clear and sweated. Add all the remaining ingredients except for the chicken breast and mix well. Place chicken on top of the tomato mix.
Cook with cover on for 10 minutes or so, until the chicken gets fully white on top. Turn chicken over and cook another 5 minutes.
Place a slice of chicken on each plate and top with tomato mixture and juice. Serve with fresh pasta and enjoy.
Toss your cooked pasta with fresh pesto for some major flavor butt-kicking.