Entree - Can be Vegetarian, Lactose and Gluten free (READ footnotes)
On Saturday we were invited by our friend Karin for a dinner together (I owed her a tiramisu`, and that has been my contribution to the dinner ;-) ). I loved her pasta salad and she gave us a big batch to take home with us; I decided that pasta salad would have been our Monday lunch and our weekly recipe as well. I only added one ingredient that you'll find in the footnotes.
1 lb Italian pasta (cavatappi in this case)
1 6-oz jar marinated artichoke hearts, drained
1/4 cup Italian sundried tomatoes packed in olive oil
1/4 cup Hot peperoncini, roughly chopped
1/4 cup Pepperoni, thinly sliced and halved
1/4 cup Italian black dried olives, pitted and sliced
2 tbsp pinenuts
3-4 tbsp Italian pesto
2 tbsp Italian extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp freshly chopped basil
Italian sea salt
Bring a large pot of water to boil.
In the meantime, prepare the "sauce": in a bowl mix artichoke, sundried tomatoes, peperoncini, pepperoni, olives, pinenuts and half pesto; mix well until combined nicely.
When water boils, add salt and pasta, stir and cook for about 2 minutes shorter than it would take to get "al dente". Drain it, quickly rinse it under cold running water, to stop the cooking. Spread on a kitchen cloth to cool down completely.
Transfer pasta to a big bowl with all other ingredients and mix well. Add the remaining pesto and olive oil.
Refrigerate, covered with a lid or plastic wrap, for 2 hours at least.
This recipe serves 4-6
- It's a perfect dish for a buffet.
- It's great during summertime.
- I added some thawed peas, that I had leftover, to Karin's amazing dish.
- Alternate small batches of pasta and other ingredients, so they will combine more easily.
- For a gluten free version, use Italian GF pasta (we carry it).
- For a vegetarian, avoid pepperoni.
- For a lactose free version, don't use pre-made pesto: make your own without cheese.
- For a dish as simple as this, use only good quality ingredients, like the ones we carry (and we carry MOST of the ones listed here).