During any kind of pot-luck you can be sure to find your array of mayo-based salads. While I like them as much as the next person, my first love will always be vinaigrette based salads. They are so much easier to keep fresh, especially when it's hot outside and the salad needs to be transported.
This Greek pasta salad is another one of those "what's in the fridge" recipes that just came about. I knew what flavor profile I was going for and just rolled with it. The end result is extremely tasty and can be enjoyed by itself for a quick lunch, a vegetarian dinner or simply served with some grilled chicken, fish or tofu on the side.
Cucumbers, tomatoes and bell peppers add a freshness to this salad that is enjoyable, especially on a hot summer day. The olives, artichokes and feta add a little richness, and the balsamic vinaigrette balances it all out. This recipe comes together quickly and can be made a few hours ahead to let the flavors mingle. I hope you'll give this Mediterranean inspired salad a try for your next pot-luck or casual summer dinner.
Greek Pasta Salad
(Susi's Kochen und Backen Original)
1 pound Pasta Fusilli
1 English Cucumber, peeled and diced
2 cup Grape Tomatoes, halved
1 sweet red pepper, diced
1/2 red onion, diced
1/2 cup marinated Artichoke Hearts, chopped
4 oz. pitted Kalamata Olives, halved
6 oz. Feta Cheese, crumbled
2 Tbsp. Olive Oil
6 Tbsp. Balsamic Vinegar
2 tsp. Mustard
1/2 Tbsp. Honey
1 tsp. Dried Oregano
Salt and Pepper to taste
Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain and set aside.
In a large bowl, add the diced vegetables (cucumber, grape tomatoes, red pepper, onion, artichoke hearts and olives). Add the cooked pasta and gently toss together.
In a small bowl whisk olive oil, balsamic vinegar, mustard, honey and oregano. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Add half of the vinaigrette to the pasta mixture and toss. Let the salad sit for about 15 minutes at room temperature. Add the other half of the vinaigrette and refrigerate for at least one hour. Before serving gently fold in the feta cheese.