You know those recipe books that are at the checkout line at the grocery store? I love them. They have big pictures and just the right amount of recipes, so they don't intimidate you. This recipe is originally from one of those, with some minor changes. It is really good and a family favorite. It is easy to make it vegetarian by just leaving out the chicken.
Chicken and Pasta salad
12 oz. uncooked rotini. Just use about 4 1/2 cups or about 3/4 of the box
2 cups cubed cooked chicken. Buy it from the deli, get 3/4 to 1lb. of chicken breast in 1 in. slices
1 1/2 to 2 cups seedless red grapes, cut in half. More is just fine.
1/4 cup thinly sliced green onions
2 or 3 oranges, peeled and chopped
1 cup cashew halves, save until serving
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup sour cream
3 Tablespoons orange juice
2 Tablespoons honey
1 teaspoon curry
1/4 teaspoon salt
Cook the rotini according to the package directions. Don't get them too mushy.
Take a bite of one to make sure it is cooked, then drain and rinse with cold water. Allow to cool.
Use a large bowl. Cut off the brown edges from the thick deli chicken slices. I usually get two 1 inch slices and don't worry about how much it weighs. Cut the grapes in half and add to the bowl. If you have one of those orange peeler thingies you got from a Tupperware party back in the 80s, use that to peel. Take off any of the white pith and separate the sections. Cut them up into 3/4 inch chunks, or thereabouts.
Slice the onions, including the green part and add everything to the big bowl. Add the cooled rotini.
Place all the dressing ingredients in a medium bowl. If you are going to serve this right away, use the amount in the recipe. If you are going to serve this hours from now, as I did, then add some more of each ingredient.
Mix until smooth and then take out some for later. The pasta absorbs a lot of the dressing and it is nicer to freshen it up a bit just before serving.
Mix in the dressing, cover and place in the refrigerator until serving. If you reserved the dressing, add it to the bowl with the cashews and mix well. The cashews will get soggy if you leave them in for several hours or overnight. This makes a big salad, so I save some cashews for the next day. The ones in the salad become soft, but taste just fine. But add the fresh cashews to get the salty crunch back.