Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Dinner tonight - Pasta Salad

Dinner tonight was a Pasta Salad with Arugula and a side of asparagus.

My family loved this recipe. What made it so great was that I bought fresh blue cheese and crumbled it myself instead of prepackaged.

Jonathan suggested that next time I use raspberries instead of cherry tomatoes to off-set the bitterness of the arugula and the boldness of the blue cheese.

I boiled 1/2 box of Barilla PLUS Farfalle (bow tie) pasta. It is whole grain with added protein and Omega-3's. Save 1T of the pasta water, then drain the pasta. Once the pasta is cooked, I mix it with 2 cups of baby arugula leaves and cover until wilted. Once ready, mix it up again and add 3T chives and 1C of halved cherry tomatoes OR raspberries (your choice).

To make the dressing, in a separate cup, whisk the 1T saved pasta water, 1T white wine vinegar, 1T extra virgin olive oil, 1/2t sea salt, 1/2 fresh ground pepper. Add the dressing to the pasta salad and toss to cover.

Crumble 3T fresh blue cheese and toss on top with 2T coarsely chopped walnuts. Enjoy!

The asparagus was cooked on the stove top for about 8-10 minutes for the thin asparagus (few minutes longer for the thick asparagus). In the pan, I added 4 cloves chopped garlic, 1t lemon juice, 1T balsamic vinegar, 1t low-sodium soy sauce. Steam on stove with lid for about 8-10 minutes.

NOTE - this pasta salad called for extra virgin olive oil for dipping and salads. Please make sure you take note that there is a difference. There is an olive oil for sauteing and grilling (cooking) and there is an olive oil for dipping sauces and salad dressings (not cooking). If you heat up or cook the one for dipping and dressings, it could be harmful to your health or go rancid at high temperatures (tasting bad).

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