Summer Fruit and Pasta Salad with Grilled Chicken

Menu Part: 
Salad
Cuisine Type: 
American
Serves: 
12 servings

At Ball State University, Bill Kimes, general manager for Catering, developed this recipe as an alternative to heavy pasta salads with mayo-based dressings. This version uses a housemade poppyseed dressing, lots of fruit and lean grilled chicken. Jon Lewis, director of Campus Dining Services, says guests enjoy this salad because of the eclectic flavor combination and the fact that it is cool and refreshing during the summer months.

Ingredients

Homemade Poppyseed Dressing:

3.5 oz. granulated sugar
1/2 tsp. clear cornstarch
5/8 tsp. dry ground mustard spice
¼ tsp. kosher salt
3 1/3 tbsp. + ½ tsp. white 4% distilled vinegar
1 1/8 tsp. yellow onion
¼ cup + 2 2/3 tsp. salad vegetable oil
¾ tsp. poppy seed spice 1 whole cantaloupe, peeled, seeded, cubed
1 whole pineapple, peeled, cored, cubed
1 pint strawberries, cut off green and cut in half
2 granny smith apples, cored, cubed
2 cups red seedless grapes, washed, cut in half
3 lbs. cheese tortellini pasta, cooked
1 cup poppyseed dressing
12 bunches mixed greens
12 grilled chicken breasts
Feta cheese crumbles (garnish)
Scallions (garnish)
Toasted almonds (garnish)

Steps

Homemade Poppyseed Dressing:

1. Combine sugar, cornstarch, dry mustard and salt. Add vinegar and cook on medium heat until mixture thickens and becomes clear.

2. Cool to room temperature. While mixture is cooling place onion in food processor and chop until superfine. Strain and reserve juice ( discard onion bits; use juice only). Add onion juice to cooled dressing in mixer bowl.

3. Turn mixer on high speed and add oil very slowly. mix until well blended and oil does not separate. Add poppy seed and mix until well distributed

To assemble:

1. Mix all fruit, pasta and salad dressing well.

2. Divide between 12 plates on top of mixed greens of choice.

3. Top with grilled piece of chicken and garnish with feta cheese crumbles, scallions and toasted almonds.

More From FoodService Director

Industry News & Opinion

Hutchinson Middle School in Hutchinson, Minn., invited students to help serve lunch in an effort to encourage their peers to try new, healthy recipes, Hutchinson Leader reports.

The students, who are part of the school’s Students in Action Club, created posters to advertise the new meal and helped serve it to students during lunch.

The school’s kitchen manager, Janet Schmidt, said that around 37 more students than normal got in line to try the meal. The school plans to have students from the club help serve lunch once every month.

Read the full story via Hutchinson...

Industry News & Opinion

In an effort to trim costs, the country’s largest senior living company laid off 100 staff members, including regional dining services directors, reports Senior Housing News .

Not all employees who were laid off will technically leave the company, Senior Housing News notes, as some will be reassigned to alternative positions. Brookdale recently posted third-quarter earnings that fell short of analysts’ expectations and that the company’s CEO called disappointing.

At the end of last year, the Brentwood, Tenn.-based company employed 53,000 workers on a full-time basis, and...

Industry News & Opinion

After receiving mixed feedback from parents, Randolph County School District in Asheboro, N.C., is inviting parents to tour the district’s kitchens and cafeterias to see how the food for school meals is made, Fox 8 reports.

School officials say that the tours, part of the district’s first Food Day for Parents, will give parents an inside look at the upkeep of the facilities, as well as enable them to sample some food and see how the district is upholding USDA guidelines.

Officials also hope that the tours will provide them with more guidance on what parents and students are...

Industry News & Opinion

After fielding complaints from parents and students, Sodexo is launching an initiative to improve dining services at Emerson College in Boston, the Berkeley Beacon reports.

The initiative will kick off this month with an event dubbed Fresh Start, marking the start of several moves aimed at improving service—including the hiring of a new executive chef, the addition of a second sous chef, and retraining current staff on food preparation and presentation.

Members of the Emerson community will also be able to share feedback through the introduction of monthly forums, as well...

FSD Resources