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Thursday, August 2, 2012

Balsamic Vinaigrette Chicken Pasta Salad Recipe

Just like last year, Doug's firm provided free lawn tickets to see the Chicago Symphony Orchestra at the ever popular Ravinia Festival in Highland Park. We left the city at 615pm, got to the 'burbs by 645pm, but had to wait in a slow moving line for $10 parking. After parking and cleaning up Mia's potty accident, we were settled onto our blankie by were hundreds of other people.

Same time last year comparison!

In the hour before showtime, we snacked on plenty of cheese and crackers, grapes and nuts, salami and prosciutto and pasta salad with balsamic vinaigrette, grilled chicken, grape tomatoes, basil and mozzarella.

I made this pasta salad for a recent family party as well and my sister in law asked for the recipe. So here it is!
- Grilled Chicken Breasts, sliced (I just discovered thin cut chicken breasts, huge time saver with just 3 minutes per side!)
- Pasta (penne, rotini or bow tie), cooked according to package directions
- Grape Tomatoes, halved
- Basil, chopped
- Mozzarella, cut into bite size pieces
For the vinaigrette (double if making a whole box of pasta):
- 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
- 2 teaspoons dark brown sugar, optional
- 1 tablespoon chopped garlic
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 3/4 cup olive oil (I usually only use 1/2 this amount.)

Prepare the vinaigrette, according to Emeril's recipe. Combine all ingredients. Toss until coated. Enjoy!

The vinaigrette also tastes great on mixed greens for a light salad.

While the concert started at 8pm, intermission was around 845pm, right at Mia's bedtime. Having finished our bottle of wine and it almost being dark, it was the perfect time to head home after a wonderful (and cheap!) summer evening out. There's not much more I love than cheese, crackers, wine and laying on a blankie with my shoes off. Summer is quickly slipping away!


Sarah said...

Your post is oh-so-timely. We are going to an outdoor concert tomorrow and I was wondering what to make for food. Maybe I will try your pasta salad, sounds good! :) said...

The salad sounds yummy! Thanks for sharing this week at One Creative Weekend! I’d love for you to join the party again tomorrow.