Skill level: Easy peasy
This is a variation on the classic Italian pasta dish made with a little less butter than usual and low-fat soft cheese instead of grated Parmesan. Itís quick and easy to make and is perfect for impromptu entertaining simply served with a lightly dressed mixed green salad and some warmed ciabatta bread. Although this sauce goes well with any pasta shape it is particularly suited to the long thin pastas such as spaghetti, linguine, fettuccine or tagliatelle
- 400g spaghetti
- 175g tenderstem broccoli, cut into short lengths
- 15g butter
- 1tbsp olive oil
- 1 shallot, peeled and finely chopped
- 1 garlic clove, peeled and crushed
- 350g skinless chicken breast fillet, cut into small chunks
- 200g half-fat soft cheese
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Replace the broccoli with trimmed and chopped green beans or frozen peas
- Cook the spaghetti in a large pan of lightly salted boiling water for 12-14 mins or according to the packet instructions, until just tender. Add the broccoli to the pan 4-5 mins before the end of the cooking time.
- Meanwhile, heat the butter and oil in a large deep frying pan. Add the shallot and garlic and fry for 3-4 mins until just softened. Add the chicken and cook for 10-12 mins until golden brown and cooked through, stirring occasionally.
- Drain the spaghetti and broccoli and add to the frying pan with the soft cheese. Toss well to mix and cook for a further 1-2 mins until the cheese has melted and coated the spaghetti. Season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper and serve immediately.