Saturday, July 7, 2007

Sun-dried Tomato and Olive Pesto Pasta Salad

Pasta Salad
"Oh, can you make me something to bring to a potluck?"
"Sure! When is it?"

Luckily pasta salad is one of my go-to dishes in these situations (ahem Steven, give me a little more warning next time mmkay?). It's quick to make and I can toss in whatever I have in my fridge and pantry. Bettina, Steven's sister, loves pasta salad and was my official guinea pig taste tester for this one and she said it was very good (whew!). I made this a few weeks ago and I swore I wrote down the recipe. A lot of times I just guesstimate quantities but I even made sure I measured everything this time and whatdoya know now I can't find it. So here are the quantities off the top of my head but if anything looks out of the ordinary go ahead and adjust it.

Sun-dried Tomato and Olive Pesto Pasta Salad

1 lb of pasta like farfalle or rotini
1/4 C lightly packed sundried tomatoes, rinsed of excess oil
1/2 C kalamata olives
1/2 C coarsely grated parmesan
1/4 C slivered almonds, toasted
a few sprigs of parsley
1/4 C olive oil
2 - 3 cloves of garlic, minced or pressed
1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 - 2 tsp lemon zest, from half or whole lemon
additional lemon juice to taste
salt and pepper to taste

Boil the pasta in salted water until al dente. Set aside to cool.

Toast the almond slivers in a skillet over medium to medium high heat. Shake the pan frequently until the nuts are golden brown and set aside to cool.

In a food processor, pulse everything except for the lemon juice until it is a fine to coarse chop. When the pasta has cooled a bit, mix in the pesto. Add salt, pepper, and lemon juice to taste.

Serve cold or at room temp.

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