Using leftover marinaded & cooked chicken

A light green bowl filled with spiral pasta, chicken, sundried tomatoes and mushrooms, topped with chives.Hubby and I love pizza, but unfortunately get bored with order-in pies sometimes. So earlier this week, I had marinaded some chicken in extra virgin olive oil, thyme, pepper, garlic and orange juice, then cooked this up and used it as the main meat on individual pita pizzas. After making four of these little mini pies, I  still had a lot of extra chicken left over.

What on earth was I going to do with it?

Chicken and pasta go well together, but I was afraid  that if I just poured over some red sauce, that I’d  lose that nice marinade flavour. So I let that marinade inspire me! I decided to make an orange juice-based sauce.

In a pan, I sauteed onions and garlic together, adding gradually to the mix some sliced button mushrooms, real bacon bits for flavour, chopped sundried tomatoes, frozen broccoli and then some fresh basil and  dried oregano. I deglazed the pan with a good half cup of mead (straight from Bunratty, Ireland!), though in hind-sight I might try something orange-flavoured such as Grand Marnier next time. Then I poured in a cup of beef stock (I was out of chicken stock) and a bit more than a cup of orange juice but not quite a cup and a half — enough to be able to taste the orange over the broth flavouring.

Lowering the heat, I let all that simmer, cooking the vegetables through and reducing the sauce, I added some of the shredded, leftover chicken at the last minute to heat through, then poured the entire mixture over a bowl of spiral pasta, mixing it together well. Bowls were doled out and topped with a sprinkling of parmesan cheese and some chopped chives.

Three days later, there’s maybe one more serving left, so I think it was a successful experiment!

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