Friday, February 13, 2009

Core: Chicken & Blueberry Pasta Salad

I love recipes that make me stop and think. Unusual combinations with uncomplicated preparations are my favorite. This one was in the Washington Post Food section just after New Year's - a spread on healthy recipes. It's originally sourced from The EatingWell Diet.

So when I had some leftover chicken and blueberries were on sale one week, I made it. Below is the original recipe but as usual I used a little less oil - about 1 or 1 1/2 Tablespoons, I used meat leftover from a roasted chicken (though normally I would grill, roast or saute it, not poach!), and I used about half the amount of feta cheese. Cheese isn't core (and trust me, fat-free feta is lame) so if you use it you have to count the Points. The flavors were great, it was easy and filling and the kids ate it. It's the PERFECT recipe!

Chicken & Blueberry Pasta Salad

1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breast halves, trimmed of fat
8 oz. whole wheat fusilli or corkscrew pasta
3 T extra-virgin olive oil
1 large shallot, cut crosswise into thin slices
1/3 cup low-sodium fat-free chicken broth
1/3 cup crumbled feta
3 T freshly squeezed lime juice (from 1 1/2 limes)
1 T chopped thyme leaves
1 tsp freshly grated lime zest
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup fresh blueberries, rinsed and picked over

1. Cook chicken: place in a large skillet and add enough water to cover; boil over med-hi heat, then cover, reduce heat to low and cook for 10 to 12 minutes, until the chicken is no longer pink in the middle. Transfer to a cutting board to cool. Shred into bite-size strips.

2. Bring water to boil for pasta. Cook according to package directions until just tender. Drain and place in large bowl.

3. Make the dressing: combine oil and shallot in a small skillet over med-low heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, 2 to 5 minutes, until the shallot has softened and is beginning to brown. Add the broth, feta cheese and lime juice; cook, stirring occasionally, 1 to 2 minutes, until the feta begins to melt.

4. Add the chicken to the bowl with the pasta, then add the thyme, lime zest and salt. Toss to combine. If serving right away, add the dressing and blueberries. If making in advance, cover and refrigerate the elements separately: the seasoned pasta with chicken, the blueberries, the dressing. Makes 6 servings

Nutrition (if prepared as above but I use less oil and feta): per 1 1/2 cup serving
324 cal, 24g protein, 33 g carb, 11g fat, 2 g sat fat, 51mg cholesterol, 270mg sodium, 4g fiber

1 comment:

tona said...

This looks good. I bet it would be yummy with something green added too... shredded romaine lettuce or something...

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