If you’re looking for a last minute dish to bring to a BBQ or a pot-luck today, or for any other meal, look no further. Using in-season produce and ingredients that are probably already in your pantry, create a pasta dish that everyone will rave about!! This is a great alternative to the Italian Pasta Salad that is a BBQ standard. Break out of the norm and go Greek!
Greek Pasta Salad
12 oz favorite pasta (elbows, penne, wagon wheels, bow-ties, etc.)
1 cucumber – peeled, quartered lengthwise, seeds removed and chopped
1 1/2 cup grape tomatoes, halved or quartered if extra large
1 1/2 cup olives, halved (Kalamata taste best, but black olives will work too)
8 oz feta cheese
1 batch of Greek Salad Dressing (recipe below)
1. In a large pot of boiling water, cook pasta until al dente. Drain and set aside to cool slightly.
2. Combine chopped cucumber, tomato halves and olive halves in a large bowl with the prepared Greek Dressing. Add cooled pasta and stir to combine flavors well.
3. Add feta cheese when the pasta is completely cooled. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
This dish can be made up to 24 hours in advance and stored in the refrigerator covered. Add cheese prior to serving.
* Tip: If you’re using Kalamata olives, reserve the liquid and use in place of the red wine vinegar for extra flavor.
This dressing is great on salads, but also makes an excellent dressing for pasta and couscous dishes. Just look at the flavor on those vegetables!
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Greek Salad Dressing (makes approx 8 servings)
1/3 cup and 1 Tbsp olive oil
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp dried basil,
3/4 tsp black pepper
3/4 tsp salt
3/4 tsp onion powder
3/4 tsp spicy brown mustard
1/2 cup and 2 tsp red wine vinegar (you can substitute up to half white vinegar without altering the taste)
Combine all ingredients in a jar or container with a lid; shake well to combine.