Saturday, January 7, 2012

Greek Inspired Pasta Salad

I don't claim to be the world's best photographer,
but trust me, it's tasty!

This recipe is fast, tasty and flexible.  You can modify it to suit practically any palate.  Don’t eat meat?  Leave out the pepperoni, no harm done.  Like your food with a bit of a zing?  Sprinkle in some red pepper flakes.  If you have fresh herbs lying around, toss those in.  Basil and oregano go especially well in this.  It makes enough that you can have leftovers the next day (when it’s even better, in my opinion).  After eating our fill tonight, we still had enough for Gavin to take to work tomorrow and for me to have for my lunch. 

12 ounces whole grain pasta (we use Smart Taste penne)
2 ounces turkey pepperoni (about 25 slices)
2 medium tomatoes, cored and chopped
2 cloves of garlic (or 1 tablespoon of jarred minced garlic)
1 small can sliced black olives, drained
1 can artichoke hearts, drained and roughly chopped
1 teaspoon onion powder
4 ounces reduced-fat feta cheese
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Black pepper

  1. Cook the pasta according the package directions, until al dente.
  2. Place a paper towel on a microwave-safe plate and then place the slices of pepperoni in a single layer.  Cover with another paper towel and microwave for 45 seconds.  This step is great because it crisps up the pepperoni just a bit and also causes it to release oil, which is then absorbed by the paper towels.
  3. Place the chopped tomatoes in a large bowl.  Add the garlic, olives, and artichokes.  Roughly chop the pepperoni and add it to the bowl.  Sprinkle with the onion powder. 
  4. Once the pasta is done cooking, drain it and add it to the other ingredients in the bowl.  Toss in the feta cheese and drizzle with the olive oil.  Mix it very well to blend all the flavors and season with the black pepper to taste. 

Makes 8 servings, 235 calories per serving.

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