I have been hearing about this salad from both my sisters over and over again….”I made the pasta chicken salad” “oh the kids loved the pasta chicken salad” “I’m really craving the pasta chicken salad”…question is, how many times do I have to hear about this salad until I actually make it? Answer: quite a few :p
I must have asked Sheyma (younger sister) 5 times on what’s in it before I actually had the complete ingredients and decided to make it. Every time I had the ingredients ready, I used some of them to make other things and this salad was delayed yet again!! Well…not this time!! Finally!!
Legend holds that this salad was first made by Betul (sister-in-law and friend)…and honestly, I don’t know if anything got left out or any new additions were made during the transfer of recipe from person to person…so my apologies in advance Betul :) The best thing about tri-color pasta is that it tastes great on its own so even if you add anything else you find fit into this recipe, you can’t go wrong!
I had so much pasta that I had to pack most of it and send it with Mohammed to his work place. It gave me the opportunity to count the servings. It makes about twelve servings, and the serving size is one and a half cups! Perfect for an outdoor picnic or potluck! :))
I must admit though…the bowl I used wasn’t large enough! I transferred everything to a larger bowl, mixed it all up and returned it back to the glass bowl :D
- 5 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves, cut into 3 large pieces
- 2 liters water
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- ½ teaspoon thyme
- 2 garlic cloves
- ½ cup yogurt
- ½ cup mayonnaise
- 3 cups chicken, boiled and chopped or divided into 1 inch (about 3 cm) pieces
- 1 pack (500 gram) tri-colored pasta
- 2 cups corn, cooked
- 1 yellow bell pepper, chopped into small cubes
- 1 orange bell pepper, chopped into small cubes
- 1 red bell pepper, chopped into small cubes
- 1 cup pickles, chopped into small cubes
- ¾ teaspoons salt
- ½ teaspoon pepper
- In a large pot, combine the chicken, garlic, black pepper, thyme and salt.
- Add the water. Cook on high heat and bring to a boil. Once it boils, reduce heat and let it simmer for 35 - 40 minutes
- Once cooked, set aside to cool completely. Once cooled, using a strainer over a large bowl, drain the broth (you can reserve it for future use). Either cut or divide the chicken into 1 inch (about 3 cm) pieces and set aside.
- In a medium sized bowl, combine the mayonnaise and yogurt and whisk until smooth.
- Cook the pasta as per packaging instructions. Drain and rinse with cold water. Put in a large salad bowl.
- Add the chopped bell peppers, corn, pickles, salt and pepper.
- Add the sauce and mix all the ingredients well.
If you’re wondering what I do with the broth I’ve reserved, I measure and pour into plastic cups and put in the freezer to freeze individually. When they’ve frozen, I pack them all together in a plastic bag and return to the freezer. When I need to use it, I remove as much as I need, and I don’t defrost. I just put the frozen broth into the pot and the heat from the stove does the defrosting for me :))