This is a last minute dinner idea we threw together yesterday. We needed to use the chicken breast in the fridge and we were in the mood for some pasta, other than spaghetti. Alfredo is a simple sauce to make and it’s kid friendly; adding mushrooms and a nice smoked cheddar, gave the creamy sauce a smokey rich, earthy flavor. Top it with some fresh grated Parmesan for an added touch.
(It fed our family of five, with leftovers, for under $20.)
Chicken Marinate time: 6 hrs
Prep time: 5-10 minutes
Cook time: 30-45 minutes
- Cheese (finely grated) 4 oz
- Chicken breast (boneless, skinless) 6
- Fresh Thyme
- White Wine
- Cream 2 cups
- Half/Half ½ cup
- Lemon (optional) 1 sm
- Mushrooms 6 med
- Shallot 1 lg
- Butter 2 Tbs
- Olive Oil
- Kosher Salt
We used ‘Old Croc Smoked Sharp Cheddar’, Romano cheese, cremini Mushrooms, and a garlic infused olive oil we found at Costco.
White Wine Marinated Chicken Breast
- Fresh Thyme 1 sprig
- Garlic 2 lg cloves (peeled, roughly cut)
- Olive Oil 2 Tbs
- Kosher Salt 2 Tbs
- Chicken Breast 6 (boneless, skinless)
- White Wine 1 cup
Make a paste using the salt and garlic. Nathan likes to use the mortar and pestle, so I let him do it. (If you don’t have a mortar and pestle, you can use a side of your knife to grind the garlic and salt together on a cutting board.) Once you have made a paste, mix in some freshly chopped thyme. Whisk together wine, oil, and garlic thyme paste in a small bowl.
Fun Fact: The salt acts as an abrasive, making it easier to break down the membranes of the garlic cloves.
Rinse chicken in cold water (if needed) and pat dry with paper towels. Place breasts 1-2 at a time between 2 layers of plastic wrap, and pound each breast to make them thinner. Pour the marinade over chicken breast letting it sit in a covered container refrigerated, for a minimum of 6 hrs.
Alternative option: Pounding out the chicken reduces the cook time needed. If you chose, you can skip this step; just increase the cooking time.
Tip: The wine is acidic and will break down the fibers in the already tenderized chicken, so I wouldn’t let it sit for longer than 24 hrs.
Smokey Mushroom Alfredo
- Butter 2Tbs
- Shallot 1 lg (minced)
- Thyme 2 sprigs (chopped)
- Garlic 6 cloves (pealed, and minced)
- Wine 1 cup
Put a large pot of water on high heat, add a generous amount of salt, and boil covered.
Fun Fact: Salting your water is the best time to season your pasta because it absorbs the water, and the salt, as it cooks.
In a medium saucepan melt butter over medium high heat. Add in shallot, garlic, thyme, and mushrooms. Salt and pepper to taste. Sautee 5-10 mins, or until mushrooms are soft and shallots are translucent; stirring frequently. Add wine, and the juice of half a lemon (optional, it adds a touch of brightness). Remove thyme sprigs, reduce to a syrup. Approx. 10 mins, again stirring frequently.
Alternative option: For less mushroom flavor set mushrooms aside to be cooked in a later step.
Your pot of water should be boiling by now, add in your fettuccine. Cooking time will take about 8-10 minutes. Stir occasionally.
While you wait, sautee your marinated chicken in a 12 in skillet over medium high heat, until golden brown on each side and juices run clear. (If you didn’t pound out your chicken in the marinating process, you will need to finish it in a 350* oven.) The chicken should reach an internal temperature of 165*. Set aside.
Alternative option: If you would like less of a mushroom flavor, you can saute the mushrooms in a separate pan while you cook the chicken, and add them into the sauce later.
Stir your grated cheese into the alfredo sauce. Salt and pepper to taste.
You can add more or less cheese to taste. (Romano is salty.)
Slice chicken, plate and enjoy.
Tip: If you want a thicker sauce you can either add more cheese, or make a slurry. (1 Tbsp cornstarch mixed with 1 Tbsp warm water in a small bowl.) Slowly whisk it into your alfredo, until you get the desired thickness. Discard any remaining.
Thanks for reading! Let me know what you think in the comments when you try it!