Pasta Salad

>> Wednesday, August 12, 2009

This is similar to the Italian Pasta Salad recipe I posted a while ago. It's just more Americanized, and I think it's more kid-friendly. And it uses fewer, cheaper ingredients. It's great to take to a BBQ or a potluck because it doesn't have any mayo in it. I make a big batch and eat it all week for lunch. It makes a great side dish for burgers, hot dogs, grilled chicken, sandwiches, even steak. You could even throw in some leftover diced up chicken to make it a meal-in-one.

You can throw lots of things into this to change it up -- peas, bell pepper, green onions, red onion. It's a great way to use up lots of leftover things in your fridge.

Ingredients:
16 ounces tri-colored rotini
3/4 cup olives, chopped
1 cup sharp cheddar, cubed
2 tomatoes, diced
1 tablespoon parsley, chopped
1/2 bottle Italian dressing
Grated Parmesan

Cook noodles according to package directions. Drain. Put into a large bowl and cool completely (or you can do an ice bath if you're in a hurry). You really need the noodles thoroughly cooled, otherwise your cheese will melt.

When noodles are cool, add cheese cubes, olives, parsley and tomatoes. Stir until well combined. Then add Italian dressing, to taste. You might not need the full half bottle -- you don't want it runny, but you do want enough to make the noodles wet and give flavor. **Side Note: If you make this ahead and store in the fridge, the noodles will absorb most, if not all, of the dressing. So make sure you have extra on hand to re-wet the pasta.**

Before serving, sprinkle with Parmesan.


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2 comments:

Anonymous,  August 12, 2009 at 7:03 PM  

this looks great! I wonder if feta might be good in it too....

Hillary August 17, 2009 at 1:07 PM  

I think it would be really yummy with feta!

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