Kitchen Sink Pasta Salad

  • Yield 4 to 6 servings

The Amateur Gourmet's guide to making a star pasta salad from refrigerator and pantry basics.

Here's my Kitchen Sink Pasta Salad in recipe format. It's just a roadmap, though; swap out all the "stuff" for whatever you have on hand. Be sure to use some kind of fresh herb, though; it really makes it special. -Adam Roberts

Ingredients

1 box penne or ziti (1 pound)
1/2 cup to 3/4 cup Greek yogurt
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
Salt and pepper, to taste
Assorted fruits and vegetables and cheese chopped

Instructions

Note: I used scallions, fresh mozzarella, a nectarine, celery, cucumber, and red onion for my assorted fruits, vegetables and cheese. You can play around with this, subbing in: fennel, carrots, shallots, peppers, shaved Brussels sprouts, summer squash, peaches, plums, radishes. Anything that you find at the farmer’s market.

  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil; season aggressively with salt.
  2. Drop in your pasta and cook for the amount of time specified on the side of the box. In the last 30 seconds or so, start tasting the pasta (run a single ziti under cold water and taste it). If it’s totally cooked through but still somewhat toothsome, it’s ready. Strain into a colander.
  3. With a whisk, combine the yogurt, olive oil, balsamic and salt and pepper to taste. Note: It’s important to taste here and also to adjust the consistency. If it’s too thick but tastes great, try drizzling in a little warm water just to thin it out.
  4. When the pasta has cooled for a few minutes in the colander but is still warm, shake out all the water and add the pasta to the bowl. Pour in some of the dressing and stir it all around, adding enough to coat the pasta and to make it flavorful. Use more dressing than you think you need because that dressing will also dress the vegetables.
  5. Add chopped vegetables and herbs.
  6. Give a final stir and taste.

-Recipe by Adam Roberts, author of food blog The Amateur Gourmet

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