I can tell that the 4th of July must be coming up. Whenever it gets so hot and humid that I feel that I must be living in a sauna, you know the 4th can’t be too far behind. 😄
The 4th of July often means backyard barbecues, get-togethers, and…sparklers!! Actually I’m pretty sure sparklers only became legal in Minnesota about five or six years ago. Is that weird? They were never around when I was a kid.
So, we all know that you can’t have the 4th without awesome food. And there’s always a berry dish that’s just too darn cute to eat (but I find a way). But shockingly, I’m not posting a dessert recipe today! Can you believe it? 😀 I find it a little Earth-shattering, myself. Usually for me holidays=dessert. But we have to eat regular meals too, I guess… 😉
So today I’m sharing this delicious pasta salad Primavera. This is just begging to get brought along to your next get together. First off, it’s HEALTHY. Really? No dessert, AND a healthy side? What’s with me today?
This pasta salad is packed with yummy zucchini, whole wheat noodles, and black olives. Plus it has pickled vegetables. I didn’t really start eating pickled veggies much until a couple years ago…unless you count normal pickles…but I’m totally a fan now. Especially pickled green beans. Yum.
Another reason this is great for get togethers is how easy it is to make. The longest part of the process is boiling the noodles. Plus it has a decent amount a fresh basil. Is there anything more satisfying in a dish during the summer than basil? I’ll basil up anything!
Satisfying, light, and easy. What could be better?
(From a pasta salad Primavera recipe in Now Eat This! Italian by Rocco Dispirito).
- 5 ounces small or medium whole wheat shell pasta
- 1 cup bottled mixed pickled vegetables (giardiniera)
- 2 small green zucchini
- 2 cups grape or small cherry tomatoes, cut in half
- 16 oil-cured black olives, pitted and roughly chopped
- Fresh ground black pepper
- 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tbsp red wine vinegar
- 16 fresh basil leaves, torn into small pieces
- In a large pot bring 4 quarts of water to a boil. Add 2 tbsp of salt.
- Add in the pasta and cook according to package instructions, about 8 minutes.
- Drain pasta and run under cold water to cool. Set aside.
- Drain the liquid from the pickled vegetables and cut into small pieces. Place in a large bowl.
- Cut the zucchini into small pieces and place into the bowl with vegetables.
- Cut cherry tomatoes and olives, and add to the bowl.
- Add pasta to the bowl and season with salt and pepper.
- Add in the olive oil, vinegar, and basil and mix until incorporated.
- Serve right away or chill. If making this for a get together, wait until serving to mix the pasta with the other ingredients since whole wheat pasta doesn't stand up as well as regular pasta.