Prep 30 mins
Cook 15 mins
This is a variation of a Sesame Chicken Pasta Salad sent to me by a friend (which, having looked at the recipe by the same name here, I'm pretty certain she got from AllRecipes.com). I changed the recipe quite a bit to fit my own tastes, and everyone in my office LOVES it! It's light and hearty at the same time--perfect for a potluck or as a one-dish meal.
- 2 (16 ounce) packages radiatore (or any other 'fun' shape) or 2 (16 ounce) packages rotelle pasta (or any other 'fun' shape)
- 3 1⁄2 cups cubed cooked chicken
- 1⁄2 cup chopped fresh parsley
- 1⁄2 cup coarsely chopped green onion
- 4 cups torn fresh spinach leaves (I prefer baby spinach)
- 2 cups matchstick carrots (I purchase pre-cut in bags at grocery, or you can julienne regular carrots yourself)
- 2 cups diced red bell peppers
- 1⁄2 cup sesame seeds
- 1 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1⁄3 cup balsamic vinegar
- 4 tablespoons sugar
- 1 1⁄2 teaspoons fresh ground ginger
- 1 1⁄2 teaspoons fresh ground black pepper
- Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook for 8 to 10 minutes or until al dente; drain.
- Heat oil in a small skillet over medium-low heat. Stir in sesame seeds and cook until golden brown. Remove from heat.
- Stir in vinegars, ginger, black pepper, and sugar.*
- Pour dressing into a sealable container, and set aside.
- In a large bowl, mix together pasta, cooked chicken, carrots, pepper, and 3/4 of the dressing (reserve remaining dressing).
- Cover salad, and refrigerate at least 6 hours.
- Directly before serving, stir in parsley, green onions, and spinach.
- Toss with remaining dressing, if desired.
- * Make sure you taste the dressing as you're adding ingredients; you may find that you need more or less of each, depending on your taste.