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Pasta Salad, Arugula Pesto, Grilled Chicken Breasts, Feta

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Ingredients

  • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • Olive oil as needed
  • Salt to taste
  • Freshly-ground black pepper to taste
  • Essence to taste (see Bayou Blast recipe)
  • 1 bunch fresh arugula tough stems
  • removed, washed and spun dry
  • 1/2 cup fresh parsley leaves - (packed)
  • 1/2 cup lightly-toasted walnuts
  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly-ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup olive oil - (to 1/2)
  • 1 pound penne pasta
  • 1 pint red grape tomatoes halved
  • 1 pint yellow grape tomatoes halved
  • 1 1/4 cups crumbled feta
  • 1/2 cup roughly-chopped pitted olive-cured olives
  • Baby arugula for garnish

Details

Servings 8

Preparation

Step 1

Preheat a grill. Drizzle the chicken with oil and season with salt, pepper, and Essence. Place on the grill and cook until cooked through, about 4 minutes on the first side, and 5 minutes on the second side. Remove the chicken from the grill and cut into cubes.

In a food processor, combine the arugula, parsley, walnuts, garlic, cheese, lemon juice, salt, and pepper, and process on high speed until the greens are finely chopped. With the machine running, add the extra-virgin olive oil and 1/4 cup of the olive oil in a steady stream and process until smooth.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta and cook until al dente. Drain the pasta and shock in an ice bath and place in a bowl. Toss with some olive oil so it doesn't stick.

Toss the pasta with the arugula pesto, to taste. Let cool, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate until well chilled. Toss the cubed chicken, red and yellow tomatoes, feta, and olives to the pasta, and toss to combine. Adjust the seasoning, to taste, and serve, garnished with baby arugula.

This recipe yields 8 to 10 servings.

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