I used to work as a sauté cook in a restaurant and this is a variation on a dish I made while working there. I made adjustments as to what I liked and what I thought would make it better for easily accessible ingredients. I enjoy it, my family enjoys it and friends I have made it for enjoy it. I hope that you enjoy it as well. The ingredients are to serve four people, make adjustments as you see fit.
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
3 oz. sliced pepperoni (1 package of about 50)
8 oz. sliced dry mushrooms (1 small container)
1 bundle fresh green onions
32 oz. Bertolli's Alfredo sauce (2 jars)
1 lb small penne pasta noodles (1 box)
hot sauce of choice
2 tbsp of butter
Things you need
1 sauté pan
1 medium pot to boil the penne in
1 small pot to cook the sauce in
1 casserole dish to cook the chicken in
various spoons and knives n things
Steps to creation:
ONE: Preping the chicken
Defrost your chicken. Use a mallet (the side not the prickly parts - those will only massacre your meat) to tenderize and flatten the chicken a little. You don't want it to fall apart, just use firm force to make it flatten to about a half inch in width. It should no longer be stiff if you pick it up, it should flop a little.
After tenderizing the chicken place the pieces into the casserole dish. Get your green onion, your hot sauce and your vegetable oil out. First sprinkle the hot sauce over the chicken, you don't want to cover it completely - about 8 dashes over each piece should do it. Rub the hot sauce in a little, then flip and repeat. Wash your hands, then get out your chopping board and the onions. When you get the onions they should have two rubber bands on them, remove the one on the green portion and leave the other. This will make them easier to chop. Cut about an inch from the end of the green stem..throw this portion away then chop small sections of the green until you have about 2 tablespoons of little green rings. Sprinkle this pile on the chicken evenly (just the top, don't bother flipping). Chop up the rest of the green portion of the onion and set this aside for later. Save the white/light green stem and bulb portion of the onion for another recipe. Now take the vegetable oil out, pour a cap full of oil and then dribble this across a chicken breast. Do this to each of the breasts. This is all of the oil you'll need.
You can either set this in the fridge for later in the evening or set the oven now at 350 F and set it aside while you finish the rest of the recipe. When the oven is warmed go ahead and pop it in there for 25 minutes, it won't take as long to make the rest of the recipe and it should all finish at about the same time. In other words, don't wait for it to beep at you, just go ahead with the recipe.
TWO: Pepperoni and penne
Clear away all of the chicken mess, you don't want the raw meat drippings on your veggies. Your mushrooms should already be sliced up, but if you got whole mushrooms go ahead and slice them now. Open up the package of pre-sliced pepperoni and pull out a line of pepperonis. What you want to do is cut the pepperoni into strips. If you're lucky the pepperoni has been packaged so it looks like this (((((( ) and you can just use a long knife to cut the whole stack in four slices. Repeat this with the remaining pepperoni and slice it as well. Seperate all of the slices so that there aren't any sticking together and make a pile next to the green onion rings. Now that you have your portions all chopped up it's time to start the sauce.
Get out your medium pot and fill it about two-thirds of the way with water. (You be the judge, surely you've cooked pasta before!) Sprinkle some salt into this, the amount is up to you, then put it on a burner and set the tempurature high enough to make it boil. Once it boild pour the entire box into the pot. That's right..the entire box. Unless, of course, you know that your guests don't eat much, then you judge the amount of noodles you want to cook. I have big eaters and generally only end up with a small amount of left-overs. It should only take about 9 minutes to cook the pasta, but check your box to be sure of it's particulars.
When your pasta is done cooking just drain it and put a lid on the pot, this will keep it warm while you finish up. But don't wait for it to finish to complete the rest of your recipe.
THREE: Sauce and sauté
Empty the two jars into the small pot. Fill each of the jars about a third of the way with milk, put the lid back on and shake vigorously. This will get a majority of the sauce that sticks to the walls of the jar, as well as make your sauce a little less thick. Empty the milky alfredo mixture into the pot as well. You can throw away your jars or clean them out and keep them. (I like to keep mine for cleaning paint brushes in) Set the pot on the stove and set to a low heat. You want to to heat up but not burn, and if you aren't careful it will burn on the bottom. SO be sure to stir from time to time, I like to use a whisk.
Get out your sauté pan now and set it on a burner. Put the butter in and set the temp to about medium, you don't want the butter to burn but you do want it to melt. Don't wait for it to all melt, just about half of it, before you put the mushrooms in. Just dump all of them in there at once and stir them up some. If you can do the sauté flip go for it! If not..just use a wooden spoon to make sure they get good and cooked on both sides. Turn the heat up to high and pop a lid on the pan while you check your sauce to make sure it's not burning. The lid will make the mushrooms cook a little faster. Check in about a minute or two to make sure they aren't burning and to stir them up..you want them to reduce about half in size and be a nice golden brown color. Once you are sure they are cooked as well as you'd like, add the green onion and the pepperoni to them. Stir this up some and put the lid on for a few more minutes. You want this to sauté for a bit, bring out the pepperoni flavor. It shouldn't take longer than 5 minutes to achieve this without the lid. Once done, pour the contents of the saute pan into the sauce pan. Your sauce should darken in color a little..a brownish-redish tint. This, of course, is just the juice from the pepperoni and mushrooms. Just stir it in good so that it's as evenly mixed as possible. You might want to turn the heat up a tad.
FOUR: Finishing touches
Your chicken should either just be finishing or the timer should be going off soon. Be sure to cut into one of the breasts and make sure it is cooked all the way through. When done, what you're going to do is cut the chicken up into little fork sized chunks. Then just take out your plates..put the desired amount of penne on it..cover that with a ladel or two of the sauce..then top it off with the chicken. You are ready to eat at this point.