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Just because it’s summer doesn’t mean you still can’t have a bowl of pasta for supper. Pasta is the ultimate comfort food…even on warm summer nights.
1 pound spaghetti noodles (I used whole wheat, you use what you like)
2 cups chopped leeks (see below for cleaning instructions)
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1 pound chopped, cooked chicken (click here to see how I get my chicken)
1 (7 oz) container of store bought pesto
1 tablespoon lemon zest
1 cup chicken stock
Parmesan cheese to garnish
Chopped dill to garnish
Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO)
Salt and Pepper
Bring a pot of water to boil over medium-high heat. Drop your pasta and cook to al dente (about 7 to 8 minutes).
Meanwhile, in a large skillet over medium-high heat, saute your leeks and garlic in a drizzle of EVOO with a pinch of S&P for about 5 to 6 minutes. When the leeks are tender, add in your cooked chicken and pesto. Lower the heat to low and let simmer. Stir in your lemon zest and your stock. Continue to simmer.
Once your spaghetti is cooked, drain the water and add the hot noodles to your pesto chicken mixture. Toss to combine everything together and to get the noodles covered in sauce.
Serve each plate of pasta garnished with Parmesan cheese and dill.
Because you’re using store bought Pesto, this meal is really simple to whip up. If you wanted to make it vegetarian, you could simply omit the chicken all together and use veggie broth instead of chicken broth. The dill and lemon zest really bring out the pesto flavors and compliment each other.
Ok…here’s the scoop on washing your leeks…
Before you begin sauteing the leeks, you need to first chop them into bite sized pieces. Then submerge them in a bowl of cold water and swish them around to get the grit out. Remove them from the water on to a clean kitchen towel and lightly press them with the towel to remove the moisture. Then you’ll be ready to saute them. If you don’t chop them first and then clean them, they’ll never get clean on the inside.
If that sounds too complicated for you (I’m speaking to my mother here), then just substitute a chopped red onion instead. Simple.