My mom made pasta salad a lot when I lived at home: some pasta, some peppers, onions, and olives, and some Italian dressing. So (along with pancakes for dinner) it's kind of comfort food to me.
But I got to thinking: could I make it healthier by bulking it up with more veggies?
Yes. Yes I can. And now you can, too.
- 1 lb rigatoni
- 1 bell pepper, chopped
- 3 Roma tomatoes, seeded and chopped
- 1 broccoli crown, cut into bite-sized florets
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- about 15 black olives, sliced
- 1T capers, chopped
- 1t red pepper flakes
- 1/2 cup of your favorite Italian salad dressing
- freshly ground black pepper
- grated parmesan for dusting
- Cook the pasta until al dente. Drain and rinse with cold water.
- Cook the broccoli in boiling water 1 minute. Drain and rinse with cold water. Add to the pasta.
- Add the pepper, tomatoes, broccoli, onion, olives, capers, pepper flakes, black pepper, and salad dressing. Toss until well mixed, then chill for 30 minutes.
- Sprinkle the parmesan onto individual portions just before serving.
- Some salami or bacon would be a tasty addition. I meant to add the leftover bacon from the grilled cheese sandwiches, but I forgot. Oops.
- Maybe try some pickled cherry peppers instead of the crushed red pepper flakes, for heat with extra flavor.
- I'll probably use zucchini next time.
- Mushrooms might be good if you're into that kind of thing.