Posted by: marthabernie | July 7, 2013

ENLIGHTENED PASTA SALAD

I made this pasta salad earlier this week for a 4th of July gathering and I really liked it.  I don’t eat olives so I left them out and substituted some green pepper, but otherwise, this was a big hit.  I grow basil in my garden and was able to use it in this recipe.  The recipe is from Rachael Ray’s magazine.

ENLIGHTENED PASTA SALAD

salt and  pepper

10 oz short multigrain pasta such as rigatoni or penne

1/2 cup lightly packed whole fresh basil leaves, plus 1/4 cup torn basil leaves

1/3 cup fat free plain Greek yogurt

1/4 cup mayonnaise

1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1 small clove garlic

2 cups grape tomatoes, halved lengthwise

1 orange bell pepper, but into 1/4 inch pieces (about one cup)

1/3 cup halved pimiento-stuffed green olives

In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook the pasta according to package directions.  Drain, then rinse under cold water.  Transfer the pasta to a serving boil.    While the pasta is cooking, in a food processor, puree the whole basil leaves, yogurt, mayonnaise, cheese, olive oil, lemon juice and garlic, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.  Pour the mixture over the pasta and toss well to coat.  Stir in the tomatoes, bell pepper, olives and torn basil leaves.  Season with pepper and toss gently.


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