Thursday, November 11, 2010

Curried Chicken Pasta Salad

Kristen (a teammate at work) and I threw a baby shower for Anna (a co-worker) yesterday. It was so much fun planning and executing the luncheon. We served curried chicken pasta salad, veggies, fruit, cupcakes and had blue punch. I didn't really measure anything for the pasta salad, but was asked for the recipe. I used my family's "that looks about right" method. Here's the recipe(ish):

Curried Chicken Pasta Salad
Fun shaped pasta
Frozen peas
Celery, diced
Apple, cored and diced (I prefer a firm, sweet apple like Fuji)
Red grapes, halved
Bottled coleslaw salad dressing
Canned chicken, drained (I prefer Costco's canned chicken) or a couple of cooked, cubed chicken breasts
Dehydrated onion (can use diced red onion)
Curry powder
Cumin
White pepper
Black pepper
Salt
Nuts (I use raw cashews)

Cook pasta according to package directions. Rinse peas under hot water in a colander and drain well. Dice fruits and celery. Mix fruits and vegetables in a bowl. Drain pasta. Add to bowl. Add chicken and break larger pieces into bite sized pieces. Add dressing to coat and mix well. Add onion, curry, cumin, white and black peppers and salt to taste. Add more dressing as needed. Chill at least 2 hours before serving so the flavors can combine. Add a little more dressing or some thinned mayonnaise to pasta to serving if needed. Stir in nuts before serving.

Variation: You can sub Italian dressing for the coleslaw dressing, add pepperoni that are cut in half instead of the chicken, sub cubed cheddar cheese for the apples and replace the grapes with sliced olives and dices tomatoes. Since the Italian dressing already has seasonings in it, you can omit the spices except salt and pepper.

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