Inner Chef

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Balsamic Chicken and Pasta with Asparagus

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Balsamic Chicken and Pasta with Asparagus                 Serves 4-6

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, pounded to ½ “thick and cubed

4 Tbsp. flour

2 Tbsp. olive oil

1 lb. fresh asparagus spears

1 Tbsp. olive oil

¾ tsp. salt

½ tsp. freshly ground black pepper

1 cup balsamic vinegar

2 tsp. light brown sugar (using dark brown will give it a richer flavor)

1 lb. penne pasta

4 Tbsp. butter, cut into pieces

⅓ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for serving

In large skillet, heat the 2 Tbsp. oil on medium heat. Place chicken cubes in resealable bag and add flour. Seal bag and shake to coat chicken evenly. Add to hot skillet and cook until done; stirring often with spatula. When done, remove from heat and set aside.

Heat oven to 400°. Snap white ends off the asparagus and discard the ends. Cut asparagus into 1” pieces and place on a rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle with the 1 Tbsp. oil and toss to coat evenly. Sprinkle with ¼ tsp. salt and ¼ tsp. pepper. Roast in oven until tender; about 10 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside.

While asparagus is cooking, prepare pasta according to package directions. Simmer vinegar in small saucepan over medium heat until it is reduced by ½, about 5-10 minutes. Stir in brown sugar and remaining ¼ tsp. pepper. Remove from heat.

Drain pasta and return to pot. Stir in butter until melted. Add asparagus and stir well. Stir in vinegar. Gently stir in chicken. Make sure ingredients are coated evenly with vinegar and butter. Add Parmesan cheese and remaining salt.

Serve immediately with additional Parmesan cheese for serving.

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