Thursday, August 11, 2011

Lemon Basil Chicken-Pasta Salad

You don't have to ask me twice if you can make dinner around here. My answer would always be, "Hallelujah!"

 Josh is in town, so he and Katherine wanted to make dinner. I said, "knock yourselves out, and wake me when it's ready." Actually, I just quietly retired to my bedroom, shut the door, got comfy in my rocker and put my feet up. I tried not to dose off.

Here's what they made, and I share it with you because it was delicious. Katherine made this at college last year many times. It is from the Betty Crocker Cooking Basics cookbook. You can eat it warm or cold. This recipe serves 4, so they doubled it.

Lemon-Basil Chicken-Pasta Salad

1/2 t. salt for cooking pasta (if desired)
2 c. uncooked rotini pasta (6 oz.)
10 asparagus stalks
1 clove garlic
5 oz. cooked chicken
1/2 c. fresh basil leaves
1/2 c. shredded Parmesan cheese
2 T. olive oil
1 T. grated lemon peel

Cook pasta according to package directions, adding salt if desired.
Cut asparagus stalks into 1-inch pieces (discarding tough ends)
Add asparagus to pasta cooking water during last 2-3 minutes.
Peel and finely chop garlic.
Cut chicken into1/2-inch cubes to measure about 2 cups.
Tear basil leaves lengthwise into narrow strips.
Pour pasta and asparagus into strainer and drain. (Rinse with cold water and drain again if serving cold.)
In a large bowl, toss pasta, asparagus and chicken. Stir in garlic, basil, cheese, oil and lemon peel.
Serve immediately (hot), or cover bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate 1-2 hours if serving cold.

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