Saturday, May 25, 2013

Pesto Pasta Salad

Summer has arrived, and it the time for grilling and slow roasting meats in the crockpot and accompanying both with cold summer salads. Here is a favorite pesto pasta-tossed salad which is great for a bit of a change.

8 ounces rotini
1/3 cup pesto sauce (I buy it cheap at Aldi; homemade would be fine too!)
1/2 cup grated parmesan-romano blend, plus a bit extra for topping
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/2 cup sour cream
1/4 cup milk (I use 2%.)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 head romaine, torn into bite size pieces
1 cup grape tomatoes, halved
1/2 cup black olive, halved
4 ounces mozzarella, cubed
4 tablespoons toasted pine nuts

Cook the pasta. Drain it, and let it sit in the colander to dry for a bit. (I usually let it sit about 30 minutes while I chop and prepare the rest of the ingredients.) Toss the pasta with 4 tablespoons of pesto sauce until pasta is well coated. Toss in the parmesan-romano. Set aside.

Whisk together the rest of the pesto sauce, mayonnaise, sour cream, milk, salt and pepper. Set aside.

Toss together the romaine, tomatoes, olives and mozzarella. Add the pasta and toss lightly. Add the dressing and toss until lettuce glistens. Sprinkle with pine nuts and additional parmesan-romano.

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