This fettucine dish is baked with garlic bread on top. For quicker preparation, use a packet of garlic bread. But if you've a little more time, then you'll probably want to make your own, which gives you so much more choice of what bread you use, how much garlic you add to it and if you want to add other herbs as well. The recipe also has instructions for heating and re-serving. I've included the instructions for a single 10-cup capacity dish, but if you are wanting to freeze smaller quantities in several smaller dishes, remember to adjust the cooking times appropriately. I've adapted this recipe substantially from one I found in a recent issue of the Australian magazine 'New Idea'. I've also recently posted recipes for a Greek Lamb & Yoghurt Pasta Bake and a Lentil & Sausage Lasagne (also a baked dish), both adapted from the same source, and with the same detailed instructions for freezing the recipe.
- 250 g fettuccine pasta
- 2 (250 g) frozen spinach
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 4 garlic cloves, crushed (vary according to taste preferences)
- 50 g butter, chopped
- 500 g chicken strips, stir-fry strips
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 1 1⁄2 tablespoons coarse grain mustard
- 2 (300 ml) containers light cream
- 1⁄2 cup grated parmesan cheese
- salt, to taste
- fresh ground black pepper, to taste
- 200 g garlic bread
- Cook pasta in a pan of boiling, salted water until al dente, and drain.
- Mix the mustards and cream in a small bowl until they are well-combined.
- Thaw and drain spinach, squeeze out moisture and chop coarsely.
- Sauté the onion and garlic in butter over a medium heat until it has just softened but not browned; add chicken; cook, stirring occasionally for about 5 minutes or until it has changed colour and is clearly cooked through.
- Add the mustards and cream mixture and increase the heat so that the mixture just comes to the boil; reduce the heat slightly and stir in the cheese and spinach, mixing until everything is well-combined.
- Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste.
- Stir in the pasta, and make sure that everything is well-combined.
- Spoon the mixture into a large ovenproof – and if you are planning to freeze the dish also freezer-proof – 10-cup capacity dish.
- Arrange garlic bread slices over the top and cook uncovered in a moderately hot oven (190°C) for about 30 minutes, or until the bread is golden brown.
- Stand for 5 minutes and serve.
- TO FREEZE: Make the recipe to the end of step 8; cool for 15 minutes; cover tightly with plastic wrap; label and date; freeze for up to 2 months.
- TO SERVE: Thaw pasta in its dish in the refrigerator; remove plastic wrap; cover tightly with foil; place on an oven tray; cook in a hot oven (200°C) for about 11/2 hours, or until hot; remove foil; arrange garlic bread slices over the top of the pasta and cook uncovered for a further 15 minutes or until the bread is golden brown; stand for 5 minutes and serve.