Sometimes, my inspirations come from friends and families. Sometimes just by walking down the aisle of a supermarket. And sometimes, it is a little of both.
My editor asked me to create a noodle dish, so with that in mind, I went to market on an adventure. What caught my eye was a Reggianito cheese from Argentina. I thought a nice casserole, with noodles, would be a quick and easy dish. After all, that’s what this column is about. From prep to oven, this will take about an hour.
1 (8 ounce) package egg noodles (I use kosher egg white noodles)
1 1/3 tablespoons olive oil
1-2 chicken breasts, boneless, skinless, cut into cubes
1/4 cup white wine
1 onion, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
1 cup chicken stock
1 1/2 cups sour cream
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1 pound fresh asparagus, trimmed and cut into 2 inch pieces
8 tablespoons grated Reggianito cheese, divided (fresh grated Parmesan works as an alternative).
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Lightly grease a 1-1/2 quart casserole dish.
Cook noodles in a large pot of boiling water for 5 minutes until al dente, or almost tender. Drain, and rinse under cold water.
Heat the olive oil in a heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Cook chicken until it starts to brown. Add white wine, reduce heat to medium and poach chicken for 5 minutes. Move chicken to a bowl or plate.
In the same skillet, cook onion for 4 to 5 minutes over medium heat, stirring frequently. Add red bell pepper, celery, and chicken stock. Bring to a boil, and simmer for 5 minutes.
Stir back in cooked chicken, sour cream and oregano.
Once thoroughly incorporated, spread half of the chicken mixture into the prepared dish. Arrange the asparagus over the chicken, spread cooked noodles evenly over the asparagus, and top with 5 tablespoons of Reggianito cheese. Cover with the remaining chicken mixture. Sprinkle the top of casserole with the reserved Reggianito cheese.
Bake 30 minutes in the preheated oven, until lightly brown. Enjoy.