Okra and Chicken Spaghetti

Happy 2010 everyone! How time flies. My daughter is back to school and that officially makes the Holidays over for me.. I still feel a little lazy though, that’s the side effect of  Holidays to me and too much baking, I was baking like crazy in December  and it zapped all my energy. 

For my first post for this year, I’m sharing this pasta dish that I’ve made up since most people still probably feel guilty and full from eating too much during the Holidays and can’t take anymore decadent treats.  I usually make this kind of pasta  dish when I’m busy or just feeling lazy to cook.

This dish is inspired by aglio e olio and pesto, the addition of okra wasn’t really planned, I just happen to discover that we actually have okra in the backyard (I wasn’t aware that my mom-in-law had it planted on one of her visits a few months back), I wish I’ve gone there a few days earlier; most of the okra have already matured and cannot be eaten anymore but I was able to get 4 large pieces, really fresh and 100 % made by nature. I thought of adding it to the pasta I’m planning to cook and I was surprised at how good it turned out.

The sliminess of okra is just perfect for this, it’s like carbonara, aglio e olio and pesto combined…sort of , it’s so good that I thought I would share it with you…. My recipe below is just a guide, feel free to modify it  to suit your taste and appetite :)

chicken_okra_basil_spaghetti
saute garlic, chicken and okra; season with little salt and white pepper and then add pepper flakes

chicken_okra_basil_spaghetti_2
…add the cheddar cheese and parmesan cheese

spaghetti_with_chicken_okra_basil
 add basil and toss until the basil is just wilted

 OKRA AND CHICKEN SPAGHETTI
serves 4

Ingredients
chicken tenders, about 8 ounces, cut into chunks
4 okra, julienned (sliced diagonally)
8 garlic cloves ( the more the merrier)
2 teaspoons red pepper chilli flakes
3 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 cup white wine
salt and white  pepper to taste
1/2 cup light cheddar cheese
1/2 cup parmesan cheese
30 grams sweet basil
spaghetti about 14 oz

Directions:
Cook spaghetti in a pot of boiling water seasoned with salt. Don’t overcook.  Meanwhile, heat a deep skillet or frying pan, add olive oil; add garlic cloves and cook until browned, add the okra and chicken season with salt and pepper and then add the chilli flakes.  Add white wine and simmer for about 5 minutes.  Add the cooked spaghetti and cheddar cheese and parmesan cheese.    Toss until well combined,  and then add the sweet basil last and cook until the basil is just wilted…and that’s it! Serve with garlic bread.

chicken_okra_spaghetti

…yum-yum!

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