This is one of those recipes I have had tucked away for a long time–anything with six cloves of garlic has promise, right. Pasta dishes are ideal for a quick weeknight meal, use Jovial (affiliate link) brown rice pasta and it’s gluten-free too. Basil is at its peak right now, available at most farmers markets—I anticipate that is what makes this dish really sing.
Tuscan Garlic Chicken Pasta
6 garlic cloves — minced
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts — about 1 1/2 pounds
Salt and pepper
1 pound penne pasta
1 bag baby arugula — 5-ounce
1/2 cup chopped fresh basil leaves
6 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1. Bring 4 quarts water to boil in large pot. Meanwhile, combine garlic, pepper flakes, and oil in bowl and microwave until garlic is golden and fragrant, about 1 minute.
2. Pat chicken dry with paper towels and season with salt and pepper. Transfer 1 tablespoon oil from bowl with garlic mixture to large skillet and heat over medium-high heat until just smoking. Add chicken and cook until well browned and cooked through, about 5 minutes per side. Transfer to cutting board and tent with foil. Let rest 5 minutes, then slice thin and set aside.
3. Add 1 tablespoon salt and pasta to boiling water and cook until al dente. Reserve ½ cup cooking water. Drain pasta and return to pot. Stir in sliced chicken, arugula, basil, lemon juice, Parmesan, and remaining garlic mixture, adding reserved pasta water as needed. Season with salt and pepper. Serve.
NOTE: Microwaving the garlic, pepper flakes, and olive oil until fragrant blooms the flavors and infuses the oil.