Monday, February 21, 2011

Pasta Al Pesto (with Gardein Chick'n Filets)

No chicken was used in this dish. Seriously.

Earlier this year, I saw Gardein (garden + protein) chick'n filets at my local natural foods grocery store and decided to try them out. I was fully expecting to dislike them, but they actually taste quite good. Even though I have not had any chicken since turning veg in 2007, I can say that these filets do not really taste like chicken; rather, they taste like a more flavorful seitan. The texture of the filets is also similar to seitan, which is not surprising given that both contain wheat gluten.

This pasta al pesto (approximately two servings), is really simple to make, especially if you use pre-made basil pesto from your grocery store.

Cook approximately 12 ounces of pasta (really, any kind will do) in a large pot of boiling water.

While the pasta is cooking, heat approximately one tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Dredge the Gardein filets (from one package containing 4 filets) in some flour and cook in the skillet, approximately 4 minutes per side. Remove the filets from the skillet and cut them into bite-size strips.

Add the pre-made basil (7 ounce container) to the skillet and heat through. Add the chick'n strips. Reduce heat enough to keep the pesto and chick'n strips warm while the pasta is still cooking. Add the cooked pasta to the skillet, toss, and serve.