Pasta with Chicken, Artichokes, Red Bell Pepper, and Goat Cheese

To thaw the artichoke hearts, remove them from their package and place them in a medium bowl. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap, microwave for 5 minutes, and then drain. To complete this recipe in 30 minutes, put the water on to boil before assembling your ingredients.

Serves 4

1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts , cut into thin strips
Table salt and ground black pepper
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 (9-ounce) packages frozen artichoke hearts , thawed and drained
1 red bell pepper
8 garlic cloves , minced
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
2 teaspoons minced fresh oregano leaves
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 1/2 cup low-sodium chicken broth
2 teaspoons cornstarch , dissolved in one 1 tablespoon water
1/2 pound penne pasta (2 1/2 cups)
1 cup crumbled goat cheese

Making the Minutes Count: While the artichokes are thawing in the microwave, get a jump on prepping the chicken. Then, while the artichokes and peppers
cook, prep the remaining ingredients.

1. Boil Water for Penne: Bring 3 quarts water to boil in large pot.

2. Sauté Chicken: Season chicken with salt and pepper. Heat 1 tablespoon of
oil in 12-inch nonstick skillet over high heat until just smoking. Add
chicken, spread into single layer, and cook without stirring for 1 minute.
Stir chicken and continue to cook until most, but not all, of pink color has
disappeared and chicken is lightly browned around edges, about 2 minutes
longer. Transfer chicken to clean bowl and set aside.

3. Make Sauce: Add remaining 2 tablespoons oil to skillet and return to high
heat until shimmering. Add artichokes, red pepper, and 1/4 teaspoon salt,
and cook until artichokes are lightly browned, about 8 minutes. Stir in
garlic, red pepper flakes, and oregano and cook until fragrant, about 30
seconds. Stir in wine and cook until nearly evaporated, about 2 minutes.
Stir in broth and dissolved cornstarch mixture and simmer until slightly
thickened, about 2 minutes. Remove skillet from heat, cover, and set aside.

4. Cook and Drain Penne: Add penne and 1 tablespoon salt to boiling water
and cook, stirring often, until al dente. Reserve 1/2 cup cooking water,
then drain penne and return penne to pot.

5. Toss Penne with Chicken and Sauce: Add chicken into sauce in skillet, and
simmer until chicken is cooked through, about 1 minute. Stir sauce mixture
and goat cheese into penne. Season to taste with salt and pepper and serve, adding reserved pasta cooking water as needed to loosen sauce.

Cooks Illustrated