Thursday, August 4, 2011

"You don't win friends with salad"-Homer Simpson....or do you?!

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Arugula Pasta Salad

This is a super easy, light and healthy dinner perfect for a summer night. I know all my posts so far have been  about baking but I've been wanting to put some cooking on here as well. Although, this really doesn't require cooking unless you consider boiling water and stirring in pasta cooking. But hey if you do then this is perfect for you!
So first off, yay for me! For making it to the gym bright and early. It's actually where I thought of this recipe and could not wait until dinner time to make it. I was on the treadmill and on TV they were making all different types of pasta salads. I couldn't hear(ipod) and was trying to not falling off the treadmill (again) but  I saw several different mixes and came up with this one. A sort of mish mash of the different kinds they were making.
This is perfect for a super hot summer night because it is not heavy at all and super simple and fast. The longest part is waiting for the pasta to cook. I waited to chop and prepare everything after the pasta was cooked so it had time to cool off. Once the pasta was cooked I ran it under cold water to help cool it fast.
You can also add or switch out the ingredients for those you prefer. I stopped at the farmers market after work and grabbed items I already had in mind for this recipe.
Anyways not much else to say about this except that it is DELICIOUS and great for BBQ or if you are having some friends over. It can be a side or a main dish and you can add as much or as little pasta as you like. I did a nice even mix of arugula and pasta because I couldn't decide if I wanted it to be more a salad salad or pasta salad. So i went with both lol :)
Hope you enjoy!
Oh and check back for some gooooood recipes coming! I loaded up on peaches and have several ideas for what do with the giant basket I have. Oh and a GREAT idea for this bread I bought at the Amish market. Anyways check back, and tell your friends too lol :)

Arugula Pasta Salad

1/4 lb. arugula, washed (stem and rip the leaves into smaller pieces if they're large)
6 oz. feta cheese, crumbled
1 large tomato, diced
2 roasted red peppers, diced (I used two from a jar and did not wipe excess oil because i thought it would add great flavor to salad)
1 lb. whole wheat penne or any small pasta
1 Tbs. red-wine vinegar
3 Tbs. olive oil
Freshly ground black pepper and salt to taste 
A shake or two of garlic powder
10 fresh basil leaves, cut in a chiffonade(fancy word right lol?-just take the leaves and stack them. Roll them and cut into really thin strips)

Cook pasta according to package. Drain and run cold water over to help cool.

Put the, feta, tomatoes, and roasted red pepper in a large bowl.

In large salad bowl whisk vinegar, oil, garlic powder, salt and pepper together.

Add pasta and arugula and lightly toss.

Add the rest of the ingredients and toss again. Serve room temp or cold.

 *Note* If not eating right away wait to cut and basil for freshness and to not bruise it.

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