Carbs are not my friend. Well, actually they are; just maybe a little too much. I could probably live off of bowls of steaming hot pasta, warm bread straight from the oven, and my own personal downfall, tortilla chips and salsa. In fact, I’ve found myself begging my husband to remove the chip bowl from the table at Abuelo’s, or asking him to throw his used, wadded up napkin into the bowl at the end of the meal so I didn’t keep eating them.
Embarrassingly enough, sometimes even that doesn’t stop me.
But not all carbs are bad, and certainly not in moderation. Especially when you add a lot of vegetables, right? That’s my story, and I’m sticking to it.
We have the best mediterranean restaurant near our house, and besides their hummus, my favorite menu item is their pasta salad. While my recipe isn’t exact, it’s still pretty darn tasty. Also, this is a great summer salad recipe; you can take it to picnics or barbeques and not worry about it sitting around wilting.
Greek Pasta Salad (printable recipe)
- 1 box penne pasta
- 3 dill pickle spears, chopped
- 1 small jar arthichoke hearts, marinated and quartered
- 2 roma tomatoes, chopped
- 1/4 cup Kalamata olives
- 1/4 cup capers
- feta cheese, to taste
- your favorite Greek dressing
Place a large pot of water over high heat to boil. Make sure to salt your water; it helps ensure your pasta does not turn out too bland. While your pasta is cooking, grab your ingredients:
As soon as your pasta is done, run it under cold water to cool off:
Add your chopped pickles, tomatoes, artichokes, capers and olives.
Then mix with your favorite Greek dressing. I used this recipe:
Greek dressing, from Our Best Bites
1/4 c. freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/4 c. white vinegar
2 tsp. sugar
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
1/2 tsp. seasoning salt
1/2 tsp. red pepper flakes (this will not make the dressing spicy, just flavorful)
1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
4 cloves garlic, smashed and peeled
1 c. canola oil (or other salad oil)
1/2 c. crumbled feta cheese
3/4 tsp. Italian seasoning
1/4 tsp. dry oregano
In the jar of a blender, combine all the ingredients through the garlic. Blend until smooth. While the blender is running, add the oil in a steady stream. Turn off the blender and add the feta and pulse the blender a few times (more if you want a creamier consistency). Whisk in the herbs.
If possible, allow salad to set for 1 to 2 hours before serving, to allow flavors to meld.