Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Mediterranean Chicken Pasta Salad

When I saw this recipe on Simply Recipes earlier this summer, I knew that my family would love it.  This is a tasty, mayo free variation on a traditional chicken salad and offers a lot of flexibility and options.  I used up some frozen cooked pasta  for serving the salad and left the girls portions "plainer" without the red pepper flakes or fresh herbs.  They love olives and this was a big hit.

Often when I make pasta, I cook a whole pound and freeze whatever we don't eat.  Then, when I'm making something like this (or need an easy dinner for the kids), I put the frozen pasta in a colander and boil a tea kettle of water.  I pour the boiling water over the frozen pasta and it's ready to use.  If you want it warmer, you could then put it in a pan with some sauce or whatever you plan to serve it with.  This shortcut has served me well over the years, especially without a microwave.

I'd like to try it again in endive leaves like appetizer "boats" or wrapped in butter lettuce - this is a great idea if you're gluten free.

Mediterranean Chicken Salad (4 servings)
from Simply Recipes

1/2 cup minced red onion
2 T red wine vinegar
1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts
2 T olive oil
1 T capers
3/4 cup mixed deli olives, sliced
1 pinch red pepper flakes
1 T  chopped fresh oregano
1 T chopped fresh basil
salt and pepper, to taste

Optional for serving:
endive lettuce, butter lettuce, cooked pasta

Mix together the red onion and red wine vinegar and set aside.  Slice the chicken breasts in half and poach in boiling, salted water for 10-15 minutes.  Cool and then slice.  Mix together the red onion mixture, chicken breast, olive oil, capers, olives, red pepper flakes, oregano, basil, and season with salt and pepper.  To serve, you could fill endive leaves or make cups out of butter lettuce.  Or, you can mix the chicken salad with cooked pasta.  Add a little additional olive oil as needed to moisten.

1 comment:

  1. Actually, I am so sick of chicken. But I'm sure it's lovely!