Oh, man! We had an awesome dinner tonight. I don’t know how it even popped into my head, but while I was trying to decide what to make for dinner I thought back to a delicious pasta dish I had at Chili’s a while back and decided to recreate it. I didn’t remember exactly what ingredients were in the dish, but I knew it was some sort of Cajun chicken fettuccine alfredo. So this is my take on it.
Here’s what you’ll need:
boneless, skinless chicken breasts
Emeril’s Original Essence seasoning (recipe below, in case you don’t have the pre made version)
- 2 1/2 tablespoons paprika
- 2 tablespoons salt
- 2 tablespoons garlic powder
- 1 tablespoon black pepper
- 1 tablespoon onion powder
- 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
- 1 tablespoon dried leaf oregano
- 1 tablespoon dried thyme
roasted red peppers (found on the same grocery aisle as pickles, banana peppers, etc.)
your favorite alfredo sauce (since I was adding roasted red peppers to the dish, I decided on some alfredo sauce with some red peppers already mixed in)
I don’t think you could ask for a recipe with more simple ingredients.
Preheat oven to 350°.
Liberally sprinkle Emeril’s Original Essence on chicken. If you’re wondering why there is only one large chicken breast while the rest are chicken tenders, it is because when I brilliantly decided to make this dish I didn’t realize that I only had one normal sized chicken breast left until I had already gotten all my other ingredients together. So the only other option was my chicken tenders in the freezer. It actually worked out better though, because the chicken tenders chop up quicker.
Now, if you are feeling extra frisky and spicy, get out your cayenne pepper and pour a little in the palm of your hand. In case you’re wondering, I did not use this much cayenne pepper. If I had, I’m pretty sure my mouth would still be on fire. A little goes a long way with cayenne pepper, so you should pour it in your hand first and then sprinkle it on using your other hand. That way, you won’t mistakenly dump half the container on your chicken.
This is how much I sprinkled onto my chicken. You can add more or less depending on how spicy you want it. Or you can just omit it all together if you don’t like spiciness, like my friend Elizabeth.
Learned that one the hard way. She and her fiance, Rustin, came over for dinner one night and I made my Jambasta (which is a Rachael Ray Jambalaya recipe using pasta instead of rice). I did not know at the time that she was not a fan of spicy foods. Now if you’ve ever had Jambalaya, you know that it is really spicy. So when we sat down to dinner, she took one bite and that was enough for her. I had to find her something else to eat quickly, and like an idiot, I gave her our left over Fulin’s Lo Mein from the night before. But I had forgotten that we had asked for it extra spicy. Sigh….another fail on my part. She ended up eating a bagel for dinner. Not one of my best moments.
Put the chicken in a hot pan seasoned side down.
Season the other side of the chicken the same way as the first side.
Cook chicken on the first side for about 3 minutes. You want the pan to be pretty hot so that it blackens the seasoning. Turn chicken over and cook for another 2-3 minutes. Then, place the entire pan into your preheated oven for 8-10 minutes or until chicken is cooked all the way through.
Meanwhile, place the fettuccine pasta in some boiling water. I used linguine since I didn’t have any fettuccine, but you can use whatever you have.
Pour alfredo sauce into a sauce pan and heat over medium heat.
Place 3 roasted red peppers on a cutting board. You may want to dry them off on a paper towel first, as they can be quite wet out of the can.
Chop into a small dice.
Throw peppers into a small skillet and heat over medium high heat.
Take chicken out of the oven and let rest on a cutting board. You don’t want to cut into meat when it is fresh out of the oven, grill, or skillet. Let it rest for a few minutes to let the juices redistribute.
Drain pasta and toss it into the pan that the chicken just came out of.
Throw the peppers in and mix around so that all the yummy drippings from the pan are coating the pasta. Talk about flavor! Why let it go to waste?
Pour heated alfredo sauce over pasta and mix well.
Cut chicken into bite sized strips. This is why the chicken tenders came in handy.
Place pasta on a place and lay chicken strips on top. Doesn’t that look delish!?
If you are feeling especially dangerous…..as I clearly was…..pour some left over alfredo sauce on top of the chicken. Yum! My tummy is happy. As are my taste buds. I know yours will thank you as well.