I don’t overly condone pasta substitutes and I’d never for a moment pretend that any kind of spiralized vegetable can fool you into thinking that you’re eating pasta. I’m not however crazy about pasta in a way that a lot of folks in my generation seem to be – truthfully we didn’t eat it in my house growing up so perhaps it isn’t ingrained in my psyche as with others. (I do however love macaroni cheese and at some point I intend to share my recipe/method for carbonara my way!). I am however like most folk working on ways to eat more veg so when I saw packs of ready made Sweet Potato Tagliatelle in Sainsbury’s, as I already love sweet potatoes, I thought it sounded like something worth trying. Well its my new favourite ingredient.
Of course I could buy sweet potatoes and a spiralizer but lets be honest, its not happening when I get in from work at 7pm starving. I followed the packet instructions to cook (hark at me) – basically prick the bag and nuke it in the microwave for 3 minutes. It came out feeling a bit crunchy and I wasn’t sure that it wasn’t just going to taste raw but I simmered it in the sauce for a minute and after the first couple of mouthfuls of getting used to the texture, I was sold – if you cooked it though until its soft, the tagliatelle is going to become sweet potato mash – a little be like what happened when I tried to part-boil (I know its ‘par-boil’ but what an awful word) these Butternut Squash Waffles (or ‘Squaffles’).
You could obviously make a myriad of sauces to go with the sweet potato but this is what I threw together. Equally you could make this sauce with actual pasta. The whole thing took my maybe 20 minutes at most.
Serves 2 – 716kcal per portion
2 Chicken Breasts (boneless and skinless)
4 Rashers Back Bacon
1 Red Onion
2 Large Handfuls Mushrooms
250ml Skimmed Milk
2 tbsp English Mustard
300g (1 pack) Sweet Potato Tagliatelle
60g Light Mature Cheddar (grated)
1 Large Handful Frozen Garden Peas
Sea Salt Flakes
Start by cutting 2 Chicken Breasts (boneless and skinless) into bitesize chunks and putting them in a large saucepan over a medium high heat with 10 sprays Frylight.
Stir the chicken to stop it sticking occasionally whilst continuing with the next steps.
Chop 1 Red Onion into medium dice and add to a medium pan over a medium-high heat with 10 sprays Frylight. Also keep stirring the onions so that the don’t stick while continuing with the next steps.
Tip – if the onions are browning without softening a bit, add a little water to the pan.
Use scissors to chop 4 Rashers Back Bacon into small pieces directly into the chicken pan.
Chop 2 Large Handfuls Mushrooms into smallish pieces and add to the onion pan.
Tip – don’t forget to keep stirring both pans intermittently.
Once the bacon is cooked to your preference (as always I prefer not so crispy), add 250ml Skimmed Milk and 2 tbsp English Mustard to the chicken and bacon pan. Bring the milk to a gentle boil.
Tip – Stir to make sure any bits stuck to the bottom of the pan are released into the sauce – this is flavour. (Not ‘flava’ – thats different).
Add the onion and mushrooms which should not be soft and cooked through with the mushrooms a little browned.
Mix 3tbsp Cornflour into a slurry with a little cold water and add in stages to the dish until a fairly thick sauce is formed. Reserve any remaining cornflour for later use if needed.
Prick the bag of 300g (1 pack) Sweet Potato Tagliatelle and microwave per the instructions – 3 minutes.
Meanwhile, add 60g Light Mature Cheddar (grated) and 1 Large Handful Frozen Garden Peas to the sauce and continue stirring the sauce.
Season to taste with Sea Salt Flakes.
Empty the bag of cooked sweet potato directly into the sauce. stir well (but gently) to combine with the sauce and leave to simmer for 1 minute.
Adjust the thickness of the sauce to your preference with more cornflour slurry/milk as desired and serve.