Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Penne Gorgonzola

There's an Italian chain restaurant near us that holds a special place in my heart. My husband and I went there on our first date. Awwww. I'm one of those people that tends to order the same dish at a restaurant every time I visit. The recipe I'm sharing with you today is my version of Penne Gorgonzola inspired by this restaurant. The nice thing about this recipe is it can be made vegetarian or with chicken. I choose to use half and half instead of heavy cream since the flavor is almost the same but it has fewer calories. It's very adaptable to your personal tastes, too. If you like more garlic, add more garlic. Same with the gorgonzola. Or take out the gorgonzola and add parmesan for a more traditional alfredo sauce. So many possibilities folks. Here's what you need:

For the sauce:
2 T butter
2 T flour
2 cloves garlic, minced (not pictured)
1 cup half and half
2 cups broth (chicken or vegetable)
4-6 ounces gorgonzola cheese (or parmesan for milder flavor)
salt and pepper
For the remainder of the dish:
12-16 oz penne pasta (or pasta of your choice)
1 large chicken breast (optional)
sauteed mushrooms (optional)
diced tomatoes for topping
fresh parmesan for topping
In making the sauce, you're going to start by cooking the garlic in a small skillet. Just heat olive oil over medium heat, add the garlic and cook until softened. Set aside. In a med saucepan, add the butter and heat until melted. Add the flour and stir. You're making a roux. Continue stirring until the mixture is a light brown color. Using a whisk, slowly add the half and half. Stir until well combined and smooth. Add the garlic and broth and let simmer for the flavors to meld. Finish by adding the gorgonzola cheese and stir until melted and smooth. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
You'll pour this sauce over cooked penne pasta and diced chicken (if desired). The restaurant version also has sauteed mushrooms, but I'm the only one in my family who likes mushrooms, so I usually leave them out or serve on the side. Top with freshly diced tomatoes and grated parmesan.
This really is a comfort food dish. As I mentioned above, you can alter the recipe to your own preferences very easily. I hope you enjoy!!

1 comment:

  1. I made this for dinner tonight (parmesan version with diced chicken and tomatoes). It was fabulous! My whole family loved it. Keep the recipes coming Leslie!