A note from Chef Kate about this delicious recipe: Salad Nicoise is a traditional favorite in France. In this recipe I have added pasta to make it more of a meal. Tuna is usually used, but I have added chicken to change it up a bit, both are delicious. Use organic ingredients if possible.

Pasta Salad Nicoise with Grilled Chicken

By Chef Kate

Ingredients

1 Pound Penne pasta (cooked and tossed with cold pressed olive oil then cooled)
1 Cup green beans (blanched and cut into 2in. pieces)
2 Cups red and yellow cherry tomatoes (Cut in half)
1 Cup Nicoise olives (pitted and halved)
1/2 Pound grilled chicken or tuna (cubed 1in. pieces and seasoned with salt and pepper)
1/2 Cup each green, red and yellow peppers (julienne about 1/4 in. by 3ins.)
1/4 Cup loosely packed basil (cut leaves in thin strips)

You can also use tofu instead of the chicken or tuna to make this vegetarian option. You can use gluten free pasta if you are gluten sensitive. Just cook the pasta according to directions.

Dressing

Juice of 1 lemon
1 ½ Cups cold pressed olive oil or (1 cup mayonnaise and 1/2 cup cold pressed olive oil)
1/8 teaspoon *saffron (or less to taste)
2 Tablespoon *Bragg Liquid Aminos
Salt and freshly ground pepper
*I use this salty soy based liquid seasoning in a lot of my recipes. It adds a special depth of flavor and nutrition to my dishes.

Mix all dressing ingredients together well. Mix all salad ingredients together and drizzle dressing over the salad to taste. Mix gently and garnish with the basil. Check to see if you would like more salt, pepper and Braggs. Serve chilled on a lovely platter or in your favorite salad bowl. It’s a wonderful dish for an afternoon picnic or a cool summer dinner.

*You can use paprika for color instead of saffron, but the taste won’t be the same. It’s really worth the added expense to use the saffron and it only takes a pinch.

*Available online at www.keyscreeklavenderfarm.com.

Check out Chef Kate’s articles and recipes at www.koraorganics.com.

Remember to “Savor Every Morsel of Life” Chef Kate McAloon (www.chefkatealiveandcooking.com)