My love for baked pasta dishes runs deep and I had a feeling that the use of sun-dried tomatoes and a yummy cream sauce would make this one a keeper in my book. When I was pregnant with both Jack and Madelyn I remember having quite an aversion to chicken. Thankfully this hasn’t happened yet with this pregnancy because I cook with chicken often. I actually made this recipe a few weeks ago and just looking at these images again has my mouth watering. I think the frigid weather we’ve had lately is also adding to the appeal of this dish, but I’ll use any excuse to make this again!
Baked Chicken and Sun-dried Tomato Penne via The Art of Comfort Baking:
1/2 pound Penne (I used closer to 3/4 lb)
1 boneless, skinless chicken breast (I used 2)
1 tablespoon Spicy Grill seasoning
3 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup flour, plus 1 tablespoon
2 garlic cloves, minced
3 cups milk
1/2 cup sun-dried tomatoes, in oil, diced
1 cup mozzarella
1/2 cup grated Parmesan
1/4 Italian seasoning bread crumbs
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Spray a 2-quart baking dish with non-stick cooking spray. Cook your Penne in a large pot of boiling salted water about 3 minutes short of al dente. Drain and return to pot.
Dice chicken into bite size pieces and toss with grill seasoning. Cook until cooked throughout.
In a large heavy pot or dutch oven, melt butter over medium. Add flour and garlic, whisk and cook for 1 minute. Gradually add milk while whisking and bring to a simmer, whisking frequently until sauce thickens, about 6-8 minutes. Add tomatoes, cook for 1 minute. Take off heat and add mozzarella and 1/4 cup Parmesan.
Add chicken and pasta to sauce and season with salt and pepper. Pour mixture into baking dish and sprinkle with remaining Parmesan and bread crumbs. Bake for about 25 minutes until golden and bubbling.