Creamy Penne Florentine With Chicken

This week’s posts have been based around “help.”

My bread machine dealt with the tedious kneading and first rise for my French Bread; and a jar of Cajun-style Shrimp Stew made for a pretty fantastic dinner with next to no muss nor fuss.

Today, it turns out it was my turn to help.

We’ve been using a food kit service for two years or so, and, usually, when they need to

make an adjustment or two to a particular meal; they will send an email with an advisory and how to use the substitutions.

Not so this time.

Instead of crème fraîche, I had sour cream; and in place of the marinara, I had a can of tomato sauce and some Italian seasoning.

I was gonna have to wing it.

•8 oz tomato sauce
•2 tsp Italian seasoning
•1 tsp garlic powder
•1/2 tsp sugar
•1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
•1 tbsp Sherry Vinegar
•1 tbsp Sherry Peppers Sauce*
•1 tsp Cajun Power Spicy Garlic Pepper Sauce – or your fave hot sauce, to taste

•2 oz baby spinach
•8 oz cooked penne
•1/4 cup sour cream
•1 tbsp basil pesto
•1/2 lb cooked diced chicken

•Shredded Parmesan
•Shredded Cheddar

*No Sherry Peppers Sauce? No Problem! Simply add a bit of decent sherry (none of that “cooking” stuff) and a dash or three of your fave hot sauce, to taste.

Heat your oven to 375º.

Stir the marinara ingredients together in a baking dish before adding the spinach and tossing to coat.

Cover with foil and bake for ten minutes.

Remove from the oven, then stir in the sour cream and pesto until creamy. Top evenly with the chicken, cover with foil again, and pop back in the oven for 12 more minutes.

Remove from the oven, uncover, then stir to mix before topping with the cheese.

Return to the oven for another five to ten minutes, until the cheese is melted.

Remove from the oven and let rest for five minutes before serving.

Not too, too bad for a toss-it-together emergency substitute.

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