cup roasted cashew nuts
tablespoons butter, softened
tablespoon cooking oil
boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 1⅓ pounds in all)
teaspoon fresh-ground black pepper
pound green beans, cut into 1-inch lengths
Combine the cashews and the butter in a food processor. Pulse to a smooth paste. Or, finely chop the cashews and combine them with the butter. In a medium nonstick frying pan, heat the oil over moderate heat. Season the chicken breasts with 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper and add them to the pan. Cook until browned and just done, 4 to 5 minutes per side. Remove the chicken from the pan and let it rest for 5 minutes. Cut into small pieces. In a large pot of boiling, salted water cook the penne until just done, about 13 minutes. Add the beans during the last 5 minutes of cooking. Drain the pasta and beans and toss with the cashew butter, chicken, and the remaining 1/2 teaspoons of salt and pepper.