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A cold pasta salad using rotini pasta that has grapes, celery, crisp apples, smokey Gouda cheese and toasted almonds. All topped with a creamy poppy seed mayonnaise dressing for a perfect dish

Best Chicken Pasta Salad

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A cold pasta salad using rotini pasta that has grapes, celery, crisp apples, smokey Gouda cheese and toasted almonds. All topped with a creamy poppy seed mayonnaise dressing for a perfect dish

Carrie’s Chicken Pasta Salad

My husband and I love a really good pasta salad, so I tweaked and experimented and created the Best Chicken Pasta Salad, which I named after me:) 

With it’s creamy perfectly balanced flavored dressing, crisp  tart apples, smoky Gouda cheese, velvety avocado, crunchy almonds; combined with the other scrumptious ingredients, we think you will agree too that this is the Best Chicken Pasta Salad!

This will generously serve 4-6 adults with a loaf of crusty bread.

It’s a great recipe for a picnic, just be sure to keep it cold because of the mayonnaise and the chicken.

Carrie’s Chicken Pasta Salad

Salad Ingredients:

2-3 green apples, cored and cut into small bite-sized pieces; my handsome hubby prefers I peel the skin off, so that’s a personal preference too (the tart balances the other flavors and compliments the smokey cheese)

3-4 cups of cooked chicken,  A rotisserie chicken is fabulous here and what I generally use.

3/4 – 1 cup celery, chopped into small pieces

8-12 oz. Gouda cheese, cut into small pieces (the package of sliced is the usually the most cost effective, just dice it up)

2-3 avocados, diced

2 cups seedless red grapes, cut in halves (they look pretty, but can use green grapes if they are sweeter and in season)

1 cup sliced almonds, toasted* and cooled

16 oz / 1 lb. package of Rotini style pasta (corkscrew type to hold all the good dressing in and sturdy enough for the other ingredients – use a GOOD brand or it falls apart when you add in the other ingredients.  I prefer Barilla pasta)

 

Dressing Ingredients:

16-18 oz. light mayonnaise (2 – 2 ¼ cups), only real mayo here, please don’t use Miracle Whip.  You can use regular if you’d prefer over light

1/2 cup light sour cream (you can use regular instead of light)

1 ½ Tbl. poppy seeds

2 Tbl. honey

5 Tbl. lemon juice (bottled or fresh)

3 Tbl. seasoned rice vinegar

1/2 tsp. Montreal Steak Seasoning

1/2 – 1 tsp. roasted garlic seasoning, optional, but balances the sweet nicely – I use McCormick Grill Mates Roasted Garlic & Herb

1/2 tsp. Emerill’s original seasoning




Directions:

First toast the nuts as shown below*

Cook pasta as directed on package.

When the pasta is al dente (not mushy or too soft), rinse and drain to remove the starch so it isn’t sticky and clumpy later after it sits.

While the pasta is cooking, combine the salad ingredients in a large bowl.

Combine all the dressing ingredients in a small bowl and mix well.

Pour the dressing ingredients over the salad ingredients and combine gently.

Gently toss in the pasta and fold till all mixed through.

 It is best to serve this salad chilled for at least an hour. It sits well over night too.

Carrie's Chicken Pasta Salad *To toast nuts, pour them into a non-stick pan and cook over medium to high heat, stirring constantly until the nuts are a slightly browned.

It only takes a few minutes but it brings out a delicious deep flavor.
Picture1

 

My Carrie’s BEST Chicken Pasta Salad would be perfect to take to a neighbor, friend or family member in need.  If you’d like to know more, I have this post:  What You Need To Know About Taking In A Meal They Will Want To Eat

And even more information at    How Can I Help When Someone Is Sick And Show I Care?

A cold pasta salad using rotini pasta that has grapes, celery, crisp apples, smokey Gouda cheese and toasted almonds. All topped with a creamy poppy seed mayonnaise dressing for a perfect dish

Carrie’s Chicken Pasta Salad

Copyright Carrie Groneman, A Mother’s Shadow, 2015, 2018

Copyright and recipe by Carrie Groneman, A Mother’s Shadow, 2013, 2018

Recognize a blessing and be a blessing today.

 

 




You Gotta Try This Chipotle Burger

You Gotta Try This Amazing Chipotle Burger!

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You Gotta Try This Chipotle Burger

You Gotta Try This Amazing Chipotle Burger!

It’s BURGER time with family and friends!!!

My family LOVES these juicy, delicious burgers that I created. I like a good burger ok, but these I really enjoy, and I think you will too.     

You do NOT want to miss these, not spicy just full of flavor burgers. The avocado adds a creaminess and the cheese gives just the right hint of flavor.




You Gotta Try This Amazing Chipotle Burger

Ingredients:

2 lbs. lean ground beef

2 tsp. worchestershire sauce

2 tsp. balsamic vinegar

1 tsp. chopped garlic

½ tsp. smoked paprika

1 tsp. Montreal steak seasoning

1 ½ tsp. Emerill’s seasoning

2 chipotles in adobo sauce (scrape out the seeds) More makes it very spicy

1 tsp. beef bouillon

6 slices pepper Jack cheese

Hamburger buns, lettuce, tomatoes, onions, *avocado slices-important  


Directions: 

Chipotles come in a can such as this and in many brands, but I wanted to show you what they look like. Chipotle BurgerFreeze the extra in a freezer baggie or container.Chipotle Burger

TIP: Using disposable plastic gloves is best to keep chipotle peppers out of fingernails and off of hands.

Seed, cut off stem if attached and dice 2 chipotle peppers very small.Chipotle Burger



In a mixing bowl, stir to combine beef, worchestershire sauce, garlic, paprika, steak seasoning, Emerill’s, chipotles and beef boullion.

Again use ANY brand you would like of ingredients, these are just what I use and had on hand.

Chipotle BurgerWet hands to prevent sticking and shape into 4 patties slightly larger than the buns; set aside covered in refrigerator if not cooking immediately.




Light charcoal.

When coals are ready grill patties on one side, turn and cook till done.

At the end of cooking, place on slices of cheese and melt.Chipotle BurgerServe on toasted or plain bun, with lettuce, tomato, onion, sliced avocado and your choice of condiments.Chipotle Burger

Carrie’s recipe, Copyright Carrie Groneman, A Mother’s Shadow, 2014

Recognize a blessing and be a blessing today.




Bean Burrito Soup

Quick Healthy Burrito Soup

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Bean Burrito Soup

Bean Burrito Soup

Looking for a quick, economical soup with ingredients in your panty?   Here it is and it’s also healthy, satisfying and very, very yummy.




 

Quick Healthy Bean Burrito Soup

Ingredients:

1 can black beans, rinsed and drained

16 oz. canned re fried beans

2 cups chicken broth

16 oz. mixed frozen vegetables

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 tsp. taco seasoning, or to taste

1 can petite diced tomatoes with chipotle chilies
Toppings: Cheddar cheese, shredded Sour cream Cilantro, fresh, chopped Avocado



Directions: Rinse and drain the black beans.Bean Burrito Soup 3In a large pan mash the beans with a potato masher, the back of a large spoon, or any utensil that will work.Bean Burrito Soup 4To the mashed beans, add the broth and the can of refried beans, combining well.Bean Burrito Soup 5





Add the mixed vegetables, garlic, taco seasoning and diced tomatoes.Bean Burrito Soup 6Reduce the heat and simmer, covered, until the flavors are blended and the vegetables are tender, about 10 minutes.Bean Burrito Soup 7Pour a portion into a serving bowl.

Top with any of the toppings desired.

Bean Burrito Soup

ean Burrito Soup

Carrie Groneman’s recipe, Copyright A Mother’s Shadow, 2014

Recognize a blessing and be a blessing today.