This doesn't leave much time for cooking and a mom can only stomach so many hot dogs and pork chop sandwiches for lunch and dinner.
Enter the summer salad. If it can be made ahead and holds up for a few days in the fridge, I am all over it. Last season, Amy's Chickpea Salad was my go-to meal.
This year, it's going to be this yummy spin on pasta salad, thanks to my latest issue of Cooking Light magazine, which features simple summer dinners. I made some changes to the original recipe to help it keep longer in the fridge and to use what I had on hand. I also prefer to double the recipe, so that I can feed a crowd. Let me know how you make it your own!
Greens, Chicken & Pasta Salad
Inspired by this recipe from Cooking Light
8 ounces uncooked whole wheat pasta, fusilli or your favorite shape
1 large shallot, thinly sliced
1 teaspoon minced garlic
3 ounces Brie cheese, rind removed and finely chopped
2 cups of skinless, shredded boneless chicken breast (make it even easier and use a pre-cooked rotisserie chicken)
2 teaspoons cider vinegar
1 teaspoon ground pepper, divided
1 teaspoon kosher salt
2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
5 ounces of arugula, spinach, baby kale or baby chard (or a mixture of these)
1/2 a pint of grape tomatoes
Cook pasta until al dente. Do not add any salt or oil to the water. Set aside 1/4 cup pasta liquid before draining the pasta.
Place sliced shallot and garlic in a small bowl. Pour pasta water on top and let sit for 5 minutes.
In a large bowl combine hot pasta and Brie cheese. Stir until cheese melts. Add chicken, vinegar, shallot mixture, 1/2 teaspoon pepper and salt.
In a separate bowl, toss greens with olive oil and remaining 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Add greens to pasta mixture. Add tomatoes and stir to combine.
Serve immediately or chill. Holds up well in the refrigerator for about 3 days.