14 Fun Days of February Day 3: Penne Rustico

Penne Rustico……..ahhhhh, an old stand-by.  This recipe originated from one I had at Macaroni Grill years ago.  Theirs had shrimp in it and a few other things, but pared down to this recipe, it is a great quick dinner meal.  It works well for entertaining, because you can make the sauce ahead of time, and just reheat it with the pasta before serving.  It can also be baked casserole style topped with mozzarella and Parmesan cheeses to a golden brown.

Easy on hand ingredients make this a simple go to recipe.  Red onion cooks up with tons of  flavor, Marsala wine adds even more, and the creaminess of the cheese anc cream rounds it out.  A store-bought rotisserie chicken makes easy work of the protein. 

If I use fresh basil, I put it in with the onions to saute, since it is a slightly woody herb and can use a few minutes cooking time.  It also helps to infuse the onions with a mild rosemary flavor.

You can see how the onions brown up and the sugar in the Marsala wine helps to add an layer of caramelization to them.

From this point, you can wait to make the rest for awhile if you need to.  The sauce holds up well, and just toss the hot pasta in when your ready.

There is nothing like a bowl full to share with your sweetie!  Fast, tasty and cozy, perfect for a week-night date night!

Penne Rustico

2 TBSP butter

2 tsp minced garlic

1 red onion, sliced thin

1 rotisserie chicken, shredded

1 tsp dried rosemary or 1 TBSP fresh

½ cup marsala wine

1 TBSP Dijon mustard

1 cup heavy cream

1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1 pound cooked penne

In a large skillet, melt the butter over medium-high heat. Add garlic and red onion, cooking 10-12 minutes, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned and softened. Add rosemary and marsala. Bring to a boil and let simmer 2-3 minutes. Add mustard, stirring well and then add cream. Combine well, and stir in Parmesan cheese. Add shredded chicken and pasta. Toss to combine and serve. Serves 4-6.

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2 thoughts on “14 Fun Days of February Day 3: Penne Rustico

  1. Yum, this looks really good, Sarah! I’ll have to stop in @ some of your classes. Would love for you to tell me again how to make those ice cream cone cupcakes you made for the Hower House picnic a couple of years ago. Great job on the blog!

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