Pasta Salad Verde: Going Green

pasta verde4

Pasta salads are so 1980's. They used to consist of cooked rotelle spiral macaroni, gross bottled Italian salad dressing, some canned black olives (should be illegal) and maybe cut up green pepper or something resembling a piece of deli meat.

No thank you.

Now that it's summer, I see so many nice looking "pasta salad" recipes on blogs, with healthy vinaigrettes and fresh produce added in. Boy how times have changed.

Here is my addition to the summer pasta salad recipe stockpile on the blogosphere.

Pasta Salad Verde.
Only green things are allowed to enter the bowl.
By green, I mean color, hence the name "verde".

You can use any herb or vegetable you like, as long as it is green.
My recipe, my rules. But you don't have to use spinach pasta!

Stacey's Pasta Salad Verde:

Basil Pesto:

2 cups fresh basil leaves
1/4 cup of parmesan cheese
1/4 cup of pine nuts
salt & pepper
1/3 cup of good olive oil

Pulse all ingredients in a food processor until resembles paste, add in olive oil at end thru feed tube.

16oz. of farfalle pasta (bowties)

1 cup of green beans, trimmed and cut in half on the diagonal
1 bunch of asparagus, woody stems trimmed
1 cup of frozen peas, defrosted

1/3 cup of good olive oil
1/4 cup of white balsamic vinegar
1 cup of basil pesto

1/4 cup of fresh basil leaves, chopped
1/4 cup of fresh mint leaves, chopped (don't leave this out, really goes well with the peas and has a nice flavor)

Cook green beans and asparagus in the same pot, about 4-5 minutes.

Cut your asparagus spears on the diagonal, so they match the green beans.

Cook pasta as per directions in salted water and drain.

Add all ingredients, along with the defrosted peas to a large bowl.

You can pour your pesto and dressing ingredients over the pasta salad, you don't have to mix them in a separate bowl. Lastly, throw in your fresh herbs. Adjust seasonings to your liking.

This is best served room temperature and made a few hours before serving.
The refrigerator changes the texture & flavors of the dish, so if you are making it ahead, make sure you take it out of the fridge an hour before and adjust seasonings.

Makes enough for a crowd.



figtree said…
Wow so green and fresh a perfect summer pasta dish.I look forward to trying!!!Figtreeapps
Ciao Chow Linda said…
This is a really fresh take on pasta salad - so delicious looking with all those veggies and pesto.
The JR said…
Beautiful. Recipe looks good too.
foodcreate said…
~Fabulous looks so tasty summertime pasta salda are my favorites ~

Thanks for sharing~

Have a wonderful Thrusday~
Yes, it is the "Green Season" and thank goodness! I've just made a pesto from garlic scapes that would work really nicely here, too. But, I don't want to break any rules ...
Zoe said…
oh man, this looks incredibly fresh and tasty!
Even your pasta salad is going green. Believe it or not, I love canned black olives....I guess it reminds me of being a kid and eating them off my fingers. Great dish!
Michele said…
We need to do lunch! We eat the same foods! This looks fantastic!
kat said…
That is a really beautiful salad!
KennyT said…
I like the colour of this salad. I can see summer in it!
Mila said…
The color is beautiful! I could not agree with you more, pasta salads sure have come a long way! And for the better~
Pam said…
I am loving this salad - so green and beautiful. Love the flavors and textures.
noble pig said…
Those colors just make it pop. I still love the 80's and pasta salad!
Karen said…
I love pasta salads... this one looks very green and very good!
I'm always making new pasta salads, but still get slack from my kids for not making some of the 80's ones I use to make! Love your verde one here!
StaceyEsq said…
I don't think the kids would go near it (too green/healthy) . . . but that will leave more for me to inhale!!! Looks delicious!!!
Dana said…
I am so glad that "those" pasta salads are a thing of the past - except at various grocery store deli counters. I'll take yours any day!
Sara said…
Your version looks about a million times better than the original :)
Donna-FFW said…
I am loving this one also. It looks gorgeous and so tasty.
Caitlin said…
This recipe looks great but it took me three times clicking on it-on tastespotting-to actually view your blog instead of a Patron ad.

'Cause that kind of obnoxiousness makes me want to buy tequila, for realz.
maybelles mom said…
My inlaws eat a lot of pasta salad with those nasty olives. This would be a nice update.
Culinary Cory said…
I love all the fresh flavors in this salad. I'll take this over any illegal can of olives any day!