Recipe: Penne with chicken and coffee (yes, coffee) ragù sauce

This pasta dish, shared by the team at Van Houtte Coffee, boasts a surprise ingredient — coffee!

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This pasta dish boasts a surprise ingredient — coffee! Shared by the team at Van Houtte Coffee, the recipe sees Italian favorites such as olive oil, chicken thighs and pancetta given a kick from fresh-brewed coffee. Good appetite!

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Penne with chicken and coffee ragù sauce

2 tbsp (30 mL) olive oil

1 1/2 lb (750g) boneless chicken thighs

4.4 oz. (125 g) pancetta, diced

1 large onion, minced

1 stalk celery, diced

1 carrot, said

2 garlic cloves, crushed

3 sprigs rosemary

1 cup (250 mL) brewed Van Houtte Colombian Dark K-Cup pod coffee

One 28 oz (796 mL) can diced tomatoes

1/2 tsp hot pepper flakes

One 1 lb (500 g) box of penne or fusilli

4 cups (1000 mL) baby spinach

pecorino cheese

Salt and ground pepper

In a large pan, grill the chicken thighs in several batches over high heat, turning every two to three minutes to brown them.

Season with salt and pepper as you cook the chicken thighs. Place the browned thighs in the slow cooker.

In the same pan, turn the heat down to medium-high and cook the pancetta, onion, celery, carrot, garlic and rosemary five to eight minutes, until all ingredients are nicely browned. Add the coffee, diced tomatoes, hot pepper flakes and bring to a boil.

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Season with salt and pepper to taste. Pour the mixture onto the chicken thighs.

Cover and cook five hours on low temperature or three hours on high temperature. Cook the pasta according to packaging directions.

Drain the pasta and mix it with the chicken sauce. Add the baby spinach just before serving. Top with pecorino cheese and serve immediately.

Serves 4-6.

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