La Chatte Gitane (or The Gypsy Cat) was the name we chose for our cottage in France. We chose it while on the road, moving home, from Ireland to France with 2 dogs and 7 cats in the car.
This blog began its insignificant life as a recipe book for friends and family who would ask me repeatedly for a recipe of this, that and the other.
Since then it has taken many different directions, like gypsies tend to do. Sometimes making a U-turn and revisiting familiar roads and taking a break when necessary.
You'll find recipes here, but also musings about the places we've called home, the gardens that we've established, not always successfully, the homes we've improved and the environments we've lived in. Currently, that is back in Ireland.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Penne Rigate with Fennel and Chicken

I love fennel me. Even more so when I can go to the garden and pick them myself. Okay, they are not the fattest bulbs, but when I chopped them up the wonderful mild anise aroma just filled me with joy.
(and I don't even like anise very much ).  Fennel is more subtle and sofisticated, anyway ;-) .

So here is a simple tasty meal I made. Did I tell you ? They're straight from the garden.

  • olive oil
  • 4 cloves of garlic, roughly chopped
  • 3 fennel bulbs, roughly chopped
  • 50 grs (or more) lardons (or pancetta if you're richer)
  • zest and juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 glass (25cl) chicken stock
  • 150 to 200 grs cooked chicken pieces
  • seasoning
  • 2 spring onions, sliced
  • fennel green, chopped
  • 4oo grs penne rigate, cooked al dente
  • morsels to taste of Roquefort or any other blue cheese you might fancy, but grated parmesan works too.
  • In a pan, fry off the lardons and set aside.
  • Pour olive oil in same pan and sautee the garlic - without burning !
  • Add the fennel and sautee some more, you can add a little of the stock to prevent it from burning.  Lid on.
  • When fennel has reached the al dente stage, pour in the rest of the stock and the lemon juice.
  • Add the chicken pieces and heat through thoroughly.
  • Season with sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper.
  • Stir in the freshly cooked penne, lemon zest, spring onions, fennel green and of course the lardons.
  • Serve and sprinkle (or bomb) with morsels of Roquefort.
 I was contemplating to add cream but then thought  "Nah ! Don't be a pig !"

Thank you for visiting.
Patricia xxx...x


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