I adapted this recipe from my lovely mom who has made this for years at most of our summer picnics and dinners for as long as I can remember! It’s super easy but yummy and perfect for summer! The best part about this recipe is that you can customize it to your taste and the veggies that you like to eat. When my mom makes it she usually incorporates a white cheddar cheese and pepperoni but since I am not eating meat or dairy I simply left those out.
To start off you want to choose pasta that you like, I chose a whole grain bow-tie pasta and simply boiled a box of it on the stove. You could also use quinoa or even a blend of wild rice and it would also be supper yummy! The next step is to make your salad dressing. I really like the Good Seasons Italian that you have to make yourself. I find that the ingredients are very simple and you can determine how much oil you want to add into the dressing. I use a shaker bottle and add 1/4c oil, 1/4c water, and 1/4c balsamic vinegar and shake it all up.
The next step is to choose what veggies you want to add to the salad and I chose things that I happened to have on hand like cherry tomatoes, frozen sweet peas, fresh broccoli, and black olives. Your options are really limitless if you eat meat you could also add grilled chicken or even shrimp to make a simple meal all in one.
After your pasta is ready quickly steam your broccoli and then rinse with cool water to stop the cooking process and toss all of your veggies into the warm pasta. For the peas just throw them in still frozen they will defrost with the warm pasta and won’t get mushy and gross! The last step is to add the bottle of dressing and toss together! This makes a perfect side dish or even a main entrée if you aren’t a meat-eater! I think that this is great to bring to a party or picnic especially if you are a non-meat eater because this is something that most people will enjoy and won’t scare people off being labeled a “vegan” dish. For some reason when you say vegan people get all nervous thinking that there are weird crazy ingredients when it really just means no meat or dairy and lots of tasty veggies! xo Meg