What to eat when the weather turns insufferably hot and humid? I vote for Italian Pasta Salad! It’s healthy with kale and other garden-fresh veggies. It’s colorful, too. And should I tell you about the creamy mozzarella pearls that complete the dish? Join me in the kitchen, and I’ll whip up this refreshing main course for you:
As mentioned, you can amend this salad in any number of ways. Love cherry tomatoes? Halve them and add them. Got basil in your garden? Cut the leaves chiffonade-style, and then fold them in. Want a dreamy “glue” that will bind the ingredients? Add a dollop of mayonnaise to individual servings, just as I sometimes do. Remember: YOU are the boss of your pasta salad!
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And here, for your convenience, is the printable recipe:
Easy Italian Pasta Salad
- 12 ounces tri-color rotini pasta
- 6 cups (approximately) torn, bite-size pieces of curly-leaf kale (not the tough stems)
- 2 red bell peppers, cut into bite-size pieces
- 1 large red onion, chopped or diced
- 6 ounces Italian salami, roughly diced
- Sliced black olives from a 3.8 ounce can, drained
- 8-12 ounces mozzarella pearls
- 15 ounces Italian salad dressing (store-bought or homemade)
- Salt and freshly-ground black pepper to taste
- Put the pasta and kale in a large pot of boiling, salted water. Cook for exactly 8 minutes; drain. Tip the pasta and kale into a large bowl or casserole. Then fold in the bell peppers, onion, salami, olives, and mozzarella. Pour on the dressing, and then toss to coat.
- Cover with cling film, and chill for at 2 hours. Taste for seasonings after the salad has thoroughly chilled. You might like to add more salt and/or pepper.