Vegan Chicken, Lemon & Thyme Pasta with Grilled Zucchini & Maitake Mushrooms

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2015

To see images of my past posts & get links to the recipes – look on my Pinterest board – HERE.

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Get your Beyond Meat coupons HERE.

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Look at those cool wine corks!!

OK – I have a bit of a confession to make.  I cook all the time & make fancy recipes & get delivery of fresh produce from Farm Fresh to You and I spend a fortune on groceries – but when I get home from work – all I EVER want to eat is a tortilla pizza.  So incredibly lame.  Made stove-top so the tortilla invariably blackens before the cheese is fully melted.  I give absolutely zero fucks.  I just make two or three of these charred fuckers & shove them into my face, swilling wine & watching Luther.  Don’t believe me?  Here is my dinner for each night last week:

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When Farm Fresh to You delivered an eggplant to me – I took a rare break from the tortillas & made an eggplant pizza tower.  That is grilled eggplant with Rao’s Arrabbiata sauce (best jarred sauce on the market) on it & fresh mozzarella – baked at about 350 until the cheese melts (10-15 minutes) & topped with fresh basil.  I recommend those eggplant towers with unbridled enthusiasm.  I bought 5 eggplants today & I intend to eat those every night this week.

But my fresh produce box also held a few zucchinis.  One night, I sliced them up, dredged them in Italian dressing & grilled them.  I then promptly stored them in the fridge & made a tortilla pizza.  Then – something awesome happened.  I had the idea to top a tortilla pizza with chopped, grilled zucchini & fresh thyme & it was a revelation!

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I have eaten thyme hundreds of times but that tortilla pizza with the subtle flavors of the zucchini & the fresh mozzarella really set the thyme off nicely & I fell a little in love with thyme.

Armed with additional grilled zucchini, fresh thyme & this crazy maitake mushroom (also in my Farm Fresh to You box) – I decided to make a pasta dish – and my Vegan Chicken, Lemon & Thyme Pasta with Grilled Zucchini & Maitake Mushrooms was born.  No single flavor is crucial here so – if you hate mushrooms or zucchini or whatever – leave it out.  It is more about the lemon & thyme.  Light & clean & vegan – this is an easy & delicious dish.

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Vegan Chicken, Lemon & Thyme Pasta with Grilled Zucchini & Maitake Mushrooms

Serves 2

INGREDIENTS

1/2 lb pasta

9 oz Beyond Meat chicken – cubed or left whole

Olive oil

1 cup chopped mushrooms – any variety will do – except maybe portobello as they turn dark & might be overpowering & not as pretty

1 zucchini – sliced, dipped in an oil-based dressing & grilled – or simply chopped raw

4 garlic cloves – chopped

Zest of one lemon (save wedges for garnish)

1-2 TBS Fresh thyme (more or less – to taste) – removed from stems

S&P

Garnish – more thyme, pepper, lemon wedges

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DIRECTIONS

Cook the pasta as directed.

Meanwhile – grill the zucchini – if you are doing that step.  If not, just cut the zucchini up.

Heat 1-2 TBS olive oil in a large saute pan.  Add the mushrooms & zucchini & vegan chicken.  Saute until the veggies soften.  Add the lemon zest, garlic & thyme & stir to combine – for about a minute.  Season with salt & pepper.

Drain the pasta & add it to the chicken & veggies & stir to combine.

Serve with more thyme, fresh cracked pepper & the lemon wedges.

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