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Hello and welcome back to another edition of Cooking with Sam. It's been a while. Life’s been kind of hectic, with it being application season and all.

I am back with a foolproof recipe. This is probably the best thing I've made so far. I’ve done it twice. Once just to try it, and again for my family on Thanksgiving, feeding about 11 people. It received many positive reviews. I know that I already made pasta, but this one's different. It's cheesy. An actual 10/10, in my opinion.

To make Chicken and Broccoli Alfredo Shells…

Here’s what you’ll need, for a big dish or two. Split in half or fourths for smaller quantities.

Basic Ingredients:

  • 3 lbs of chicken, shredded and seasoned to taste

  • 1 bag (12 ounces) frozen broccoli florets

  • 12 oz box of Big Pasta Shells

  • 1 Shredded Mozzarella cheese bag

  • Parmesan cheese

  • Either storebought or homemade Alfredo sauce.

D.I.Y. Alfredo Sauce:

  • 6 tablespoons salted butter

  • 6 cloves garlic minced

  • 2 cups heavy cream

  • 2 ½ cups coconut milk

  • 2 cups Parmesan cheese

  • 2 cups shredded Mozzarella cheese

Chef’s Recommendation of Seasoning:

  • Lawry’s Red Seasoning

  • Sriracha

  • Olive oil

  • Garlic Powder

  • Cholula

  • Tequila (optional)

For maximum time efficiency, I recommend you season the uncooked chicken first. Then you blanche the broccoli and boil the pasta at the same time. Not in the same pot, of course.

Good ol' Blanched Broccoli

First, I started with blanching the broccoli. You want it to get to a bright green color. I poured the broccoli into a pan and flooded them with water. Made sure they drowned. After a few minutes of the water boiling, I took them out and placed them in a strainer.

Sizzling Hot Chicken

For the chicken, I eyeballed the seasoning. I’ll put them in the order that I put a greatest amount to least. I included Lawry’s red seasoning, garlic powder, Sriracha, Cholula, Tequila, and olive oil. I put whatever was in the cupboards hoping it’d mix well (it did). It smelled really good. Once it'd been marinating for a while, I placed it to cook on a non-stick pan.

While the chicken cooked, I was going back and forth between chopping broccoli and using tongs to flip each side of it.

These foods are practically lovers the way they complement eachother so well.

Once I had both the chicken and broccoli chopped up, I mixed them together. I added a little bit more salt for good measure. Then it was time to drain the pasta shells that had been boiling. I made the alfredo and poured that sauce over the drained pasta.

Originally, my idea had been to use jumbo shells and stuff them with the chicken and broccoli then cover them with alfredo and cheese. Except that didn’t happen because when I was at the store I mistook “Big Pasta Shells” to be the same as “Jumbo Pasta Shells”. I was looking at the pasta boiling and waiting for it to grow, which just wasn’t occurring. I realized my silly little naive mistake and had to improvise.

The soon to be baked masterpiece.

My idea was to put it in layers. I filled the bottom with pasta and sprinkled bits of cheese, mozzarella and parmesan. Then I covered it with broccoli and chicken. More cheese. Another layer of pasta, more cheese. I just wanted to have more pasta in there than broccoli or chicken.

I grabbed a refractory I thought could fit it all. I ended up having to grab two of them. Also, make sure to grease before baking.

I popped that in the oven at 350 degrees, for 25 minutes. Make sure to pre-heat as well. Then, you’re done!

Final thoughts: I ended up having more leftovers than I thought I would. I think it tasted even better reheated on the stove. This meal will definitely leave you with cravings. A way I added more flavor to it was eating it with kimchi and baked sweet potato on the side. It was really good, and it sent me to heaven.

Thank you for reading.


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