Every now and then I still get the urge to cook. (I jest, but despite the fact that I am cooking quite a lot these days, admittedly most of my nights recently have been spent in one restaurant or another. I know. Poor me.)
Anyhoo, tonight was one of those nights we were both home, so I cooked up something that was startlingly good. From the ingredient list you might infer that I was merely tossing together leftovers, but I had Mr. Food Musings bring the ingredients home specifically for dinner (though it would work incredibly well if you need to rid your fridge of last night's pasta, an old drumstick or two and a yellow pepper that's been nearly forgotten in the crisper). After a few misguided ideas -- witness the roasted red pepper and crumbled bacon now stashed in my refrigerator -- I finally ended up with Nir-freaking-vana. I love it when that happens!
Spicy Asian-ish-style pasta
1/2 pound pasta, preferably spaghetti, linguine, or fettucine
2 TBSP olive oil or bacon grease (It's the year of the pig and bacon rules. Get over it.)
1 large clove garlic, minced
1/2-inch knob fresh ginger, minced
1/2 large red onion, thinly sliced into half moons
1 serrano pepper, thinly sliced (Seed them if you are a spice-o-phobe -- this was lip tingling hot.)
1 yellow pepper, chopped
1/2 cup stock or broth, any variety (I used some water I'd used to soak dried porcini mushrooms.)
1/2 cup sliced brown mushrooms
1 cup chopped cooked chicken breast
1/4 cup fresh chopped cilantro
1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
salt and pepper to taste
Prepare the pasta. (According to package directions.) Drain and set aside to cool. Toss it with a smidge of olive oil if it's going to be a while before you get around to making the rest of the meal.
Sauté the vegetables. Heat the oil or grease in a large sauté pan over medium heat. Add the garlic and ginger and cook until you can smell it, about 1 minute. Add the onion and cook until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the serrano pepper and the yellow pepper and stir to coat. Allow the yellow pepper to soften a bit, 2-3 minutes, before adding the stock. Stir occasionally until the stock has evaporated and the onion and pepper are cooked through, about 5 minutes. Add the mushrooms and chicken and sauté until warm, about 3 minutes. Toss in the pasta and smush it around as best as you can to mix in all the goodies.
Garnish and serve. Divide the pasta between two bowls and toss on as much cilantro and feta cheese as you like. Season to taste and chow down.