It’s no secret that KB:
a) Loves pasta, and
b) Loves my cooking!
Perhaps he is biased, but I’ll take the compliment! Last night I gave him a choice: Chicken stirfry served on noodles or chicken pasta (to use the leftover roast chicken from his previous night’s dinner). Naturally, he chose pasta. So, I rummaged around in the kitchen to see what chicken pasta dish I could throw together.
I came up with a delicious chicken carbonara! The best thing? It can be tweaked to be either vegetarian or carnivorous without much effort. Vegetarian option for me and chicken option for KB. Win-win!
Cream Cheese & Chicken Carbonara
2 Cups classic bechamel sauce
2 Cloves crushed garlic
1 Small onion (diced)
1/2 Cup green pepper (diced)
2 Cups mushrooms (diced)
1/2 Cup diced bacon
1 Cup cooked chicken
1/2 Cup grated cheddar cheese
2 Tbsp fresh parsley
1/2 Tub cream cheese
Pinch of salt
Fresh ground black pepper to taste
Get your classic bechamel/white sauce ready before you start. I prefer to make my own, even if it frustrates me and threatens to be lumpy sometimes. But you can use a store-bought sauce to cut down on cooking time.
- Gently fry the onion until translucent and soft.
- Add the bacon, garlic, green pepper and mushrooms and muddle over low heat for 10 minutes.
- Add the white sauce, cheddar cheese and cream cheese to the onion/greenpepper/garlic and mushroom mixture.
- Add salt and pepper to taste.
- Cook and drain the pasta.
- Add the shredded chicken to the sauce.
- Gently mix the creamy sauce and parsley through the pasta.
- To serve a vegetarian option in addition to a chicken option, fry the bacon separately and add it with the chicken towards the end. Dish a portion of pasta into a separate serving bowl and add a generous serving of creamy sauce and parsley before you add the meat ingredients to the sauce.
- Simply leave the bacon and chicken out completely for a vegetarian dish.
- Add plain or flavoured cream cheese – I added a jalapeños cream cheese to the dish I made.
It’s a poor-quality photo, I know. It was taken on my cellphone moments before KB wrestled his bowl of dinner away from me 😉