Rustic Mediterranean Pasta w/ Tomatoes

by zesty on January 11, 2010 · 14 comments

Happy Monday!  I hope you had a great weekend.  Mine was filled family activities such as a family music lesson, shopping for furniture, a fun family dinner, lots of Sudoku and some relaxation.  It was just what the doctor ordered.  It is back to another week at the grind.

 How is your work going?  Mine seems very hectic but time is flying by and I am surviving.  I try not to complain about work because I love what I am doing and often times nobody listens when you complain.

I have been meaning to share this salad with you for a while and I keep forgetting.  It has made it to the top of my list  now and ready for display.  I was first introduced to this salad a few months ago by a Zesty -In-Law.  I really like the ingredient selection and the balance of flavors.  I am pretty sure you will have a hankering for this one when you see the details.

rustic_pasta1

This was one of the features at our New Years Day potluck.

Ingredients

  • 1 Pint each of red and yellow cherry or grape tomatoes
  • 1/4 Cup Red Onion ( chopped)
  • 1/2 Cup Kalamata or black olives
  • 1/4 Cup Red wine vinegar
  • 1/4 Cup Olive Oil
  • 1/2 Cup crumbled feta cheese
  • 1/3 Cup chopped fresh dill
  • 1 Tsp. Salt
  • 1 Tsp. dried oregano leaves
  • 1/2 Tsp. Garlic powder
  • 1/2 Tsp. Pepper
  • 250g Whole wheat fusilli pasta
  • 14 Cup raisins
  • 1/4 Cup Toasted pine nuts

Method

  1. Cut tomatoes in half, then place in a large bowl.
  2. Chop onion and coarsely chop olives; add with tomatoes
  3. Drizzle with vinegar and oil.
  4. Add feta, dill and dried seasonings and mix well; Let stand at room temperature.
  5. Meanwhile, cook pasta according to directions.  Add raisins to the boiling pasta for the last minute of cooking.
  6. Before draining pasta, remove 1/4 of pasta water.
  7. Drain pasta and raisins then add to tomato mixture and stir.  If you find the pasta too dry, add a little bit of water.
  8. Taste and add more cheese and dill if desired.
  9. Spoon into bowls and top with toasted pine nuts
  10. rustic_pasta1

  11. ENJOY!

Zesty Tip: For a slightly drier version of the salad you can omit the olive oil and just go with the red wine vinegar.  Zesty in law did just that and it was fabulous.

I was really impressed with the tomatoes in the salad.  I am not a fan of olives at all but I didn’t mind them in this salad for some reason.  I think my favorite part had to be the feta cheese and the fresh tomatoes.  This is a huge success in the summer when you can use your garden fresh grape tomatoes.

What is your all time favorite pasta salad? I am always on the look out for a great pasta salad that can be made on a Sunday and ready to eat through the week when you are in a pinch.  Tell me yours in the comments.

I hope you have an awesome day today.

Take care

zesty

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