We had a bunch of peppers and onions left over from our fajita feast. I believe this is because my husband ate five fajitas to my one and because his meat to veggie ratio was ten to one. Thus, loads of veggies were left all alone with nowhere to go. Rather than let them sit in the fridge for a week and then toss them in the garbage like I normally would, I decided to look for inspiration…
First, I checked the Pioneer Woman site because I love Ree and her recipes. I found a wonderful link for Cajun Chicken Pasta to use as a guide. I decided to bake some frozen chicken breasts I had on hand (you could also use a rotisserie chicken from the store), whip up a Besciamella sauce, cook some pasta, and make my own version.
With nothing labeled ‘Cajun’ in my cupboard, I did some research and found this Cajun seasoning recipe to use. I got a bowl out and started sprinkling whatever I had on hand without measuring to get about 2 Tbsp to use for the sauce. (I realize at this point that I sound exactly like my mother. She makes great chili and when you ask her for the recipe, she doesn’t have one!) You can adjust to your own heat preference. Tabasco anyone? And Voila! Cajun sauce for your pasta.
Right before the pasta was done, I warmed the chicken and veggies in a skillet. I reserved a cup of the pasta water, drained the pasta and threw it all back in the big ol’ pot, mixing the chicken, veggies, Besciamella (now Cajun) sauce, and pasta all together. I added some pasta water to thin out the sauce a bit and the final result was this:
My version was a success and saving veggies from the trash receptacle gave me a clear conscience.
Special thanks to my dear friend Amy who also ordered a version of this dish at our dinner out last week.
Inspiration is everywhere!