Pasta Primavera + French Boulevardier

chicken_pasta_primavera_french_boulevardier

Today is the first day of Fall, so what better recipe to prepare than one that allows you to cling on to any lingering remnants of fresh Summer vegetables? Primavera makes for a great meal because it’s simple, flexible, and most of all, you can’t beat the colorful presentation.

Use this recipe as a template, and don’t hesitate to omit chicken or use different vegetables. Just make sure you have a colorful variety of vegetables and don’t skip the blanching for the ones that need a little bit longer to cook. This will ensure they maintain their vibrant color and don’t become overcooked.

For the cocktail pairing, I have chosen a negroni variant, known as a The Boulevardier. A classic negroni is equal parts gin, Campari, and sweet vermouth, but The Boulevardier substitutes the gin for bourbon. Technically not a bourbon, Bastille is a French whiskey aged in Limousin oak barrels – Limousin being the particular region in France the oak is sourced. Contrary to popular belief, bourbon is not restricted to Bourboun County Kentucky, but there are several other various rules. Bastille is apricot on the nose and has notes similar to Scotch and cognacs on the palate. It’s very fruit driven, so it cuts the bitter spice notes of the Campari in this cocktail perfectly.


Pasta Primavera
 
Serves: 5
Ingredients
  • 2 cups broccoli
  • ½ cup carrots (diced)
  • 2 breasts chicken (boneless)
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 red bell pepper(sliced)
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 2 cups zucchini/squash (thinly sliced)
  • 1 cup grape tomatoes (diced)
  • ½ pound angel hair pasta
  • basil
  • ½ cup chicken broth
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • 8 ounces mushrooms (sliced)
  • ½ cup Parmesan cheese
Instructions
  1. Blanch the broccoli and carrots by bringing a large pot of salted water to a boil, and having a separate large bowl to the side filled with ice water. Add the broccoli and carrots and boil for approximately one minute then transfer directly into ice bath until cooled. Remover from ice bath.
  2. Use the remaining boiling water to poach the chicken breasts. If the breasts are thick cut, them in half longways so they are thinner and will cook faster. Feel free to add any aromatics you may have handy such as the discarded basil stems, garlic, onion, peppercorns, etc.. Once cooked, dice the chicken. Again, reserve this water for cooking the pasta.
  3. Heat the butter and olive oil over medium high heat in a sauté pan, and add the red bell pepper. After pepper begins to soften add minced garlic, zucchini and/or squash and the diced grape tomatoes. Sauté for 2 minutes.
  4. Add the chicken broth and heavy cream and bring to a boil before adding blanched vegetables form earlier. Add mushrooms, diced chicken, and Parmesan then lower heat to simmer.
  5. Boil the angel hair pasta for approximately 3-4 minutes. Once cooked, strain and add to primavera mixture. Add basil and combine all ingredients.
  6. Garnish with basil leaves.

French Boulevardier
 
Serves: 1
Ingredients
  • 1½ ounces Bastille French Whiskey
  • 1½ ounces Campari
  • 1½ ounces Sweet Vermouth
Instructions
  1. Mix equal parts whiskey, Campari, and sweet vermouth in a rocks glass over ice. Stir until chilled.
Notes
Use of Bastille whiskey is key to this cocktail. The French oak that it is aged in imparts a very unique flavor not generally found in whiskey.
 

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