Picnic fare

Over the past couple of years we’ve gotten into a wonderful routine of taking a picnic almost every weekend of the summer. These excursions usually involve a drive to a park or other “put in” near a bike path and then pedaling a roundtrip of about 14-16 miles. Once we’re back to our car we unload our cooler, the picnic basket, and a couple of lawn chairs. I’ll spread out the tablecloth and unpack the plates and food. Watching the scenery under a shady tree is a delightful way to spend part of a Saturday or Sunday.

Yesterday we did a piece of the Banks to Vernonia trail (one of our favorite routes) and ended back at Manning. This pasta salad was a part of the menu. I enjoyed three helpings it was so good, justifying all the biking we’d done as a good excuse for my indulgence. Dessert was The New York Times chocolate chip cookies I posted yesterday.

Roasted chicken and bow tie pasta salad. Recipe adapted from Cooking Light magazine.


  • 3 cups uncooked farfalle (bow tie pasta) (about a half pound)
  • 1/3 cup fresh orange juice 
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil 
  • 1 tablespoon stone-ground mustard 
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons rice vinegar
  • 2 cups shredded cooked chicken breast (about 2 breasts)
  • 1 1/2 cups seedless red grapes, halved 
  • 1 cup thin diagonally cut celery 
  • 1/3 cup finely chopped red onion
  • 1/3 cup coarsely chopped walnuts, toasted
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley


Cook pasta according to package directions; drain. Cool completely.

Combine orange juice and the next 7 ingredients (orange juice through rice vinegar) in a large bowl, stirring with a whisk to combine. Add pasta, chicken, grapes, celery, red onion, walnuts, chives, and parsley; toss gently to combine.

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