Chile Chicken Pasta

A favourite dish in my family, Chile Chicken Pasta is devoured for dinner and enjoyed for lunch the next day. Fusilli pasta works best as its shape so nicely absorbs the chile flavour, which is the hallmark of this sure to please recipe. 200 grams fusilli pasta, just cooked (best if the pasta is still hot when it’s added to the other ingredients) 2 hot chile peppers (yellow, red or green or combine). Look for them with the bell peppers at your grocer. 1 tsp. dried crushed red chile pepper ½ cup extra virgin olive oil 2 chicken breasts cut into small strips Butter for cooking chicken, about 1/3 cup Salt and Pepper to taste (don't be stingy) 1 bunch asparagus, cut into 1inch strips 1 red bell pepper, cut into strips 8 (or so) mushrooms, sliced 60 g basil, coarsely chopped or torn 3 cloves garlic, chopped ½ cup olive oil Olive oil for drizzling (optional) ½ cup grated parmesan cheese 1. Chop chile peppers into small rings and place in a bowl with crushed chile pepper. Add olive oil, stir and set aside 2. Heat butter in a saucepan. Add chicken breast strips and cook until done, turning as needed. Sprinkle the chicken with salt and pepper while it is cooking 3. With a slotted spoon, remove chicken and place in a bowl, leaving drippings in the saucepan. 4. Toss asparagus and red pepper strips into the saucepan, cooking for 3 – 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove with a slotted spoon and add to the bowl with the chicken. 5. If needed, add more butter to the saucepan. Saute the mushrooms in the same saucepan. When done, add to the bowl with chicken and veggies, including all the contents from the saucepan (leave no flavours behind!). 6. In a large heated pot sauté the garlic and chile olive oil you made in Step 1. Stir in the basil and chicken/veggie mixture. Add more salt and pepper to taste. Cook and stir for a few more minutes. 7. Now it’s time to add the pasta. Gently fold it in, allowing all the flavours to absorb together. Cook on low heat for five minutes, continuing to fold occasionally, drizzling with more olive oil as desired. 8. Turn off heat and let sit for a few minutes before turning into a serving bowl. 9. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese and serve. Recipe by Donna Sales from the Hope Café Kitchen.