After calling my parents to come over for dinner last week, I realized I wanted to try something new for a side dish. I knew I wanted a pasta salad, but I didn't want to make the traditional, mayo drenched, version.
I searched on the web for some new, inspiring recipes. While there are obviously tons of recipes to choose from online, I took notes and ingredients from several, to make my own version. Here it is!
1tbsp of olive oil
2 tbsp salt
1 lb pasta (I prefer the tri color rotini, but use whichever you prefer)
3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
12 ounce container of marinated mozerella balls, drained NOT rinsed
1 cup sliced black olives
2 medium tomatoes, seeded and diced
1/2 large red onion, diced
1/2 English cucumber, peeled and diced
1/3 cup red wine vinegar
1/3 cup shredded parmesan and romano cheese
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Bring a large pot of water to boil, add 1 tbsp olive oil, 2 tbsp of salt, and pasta. Cook until al dente, about 8 minutes, or according to package directions. Drain, and spread on a flat surface to cool (this will avoid the noodles sticking together). When cool, transfer to a serving bowl and toss with 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil.
Mix remaining ingredients in a seperate bowl. Toss with the pasta, adding seasoning to taste, and enjoy!
This was delicious and a big hit! It's crisp, refreshing, and not nearly as heavy as the old fashioned pasta salads. It was also incredibly easy, and left overs were just as delicious the next day.