Every summer calls for a great pasta salad. This tangy Mediterranean style one is packed full of flavour with olives, feta and dill. A keeper for summer gatherings for sure.
As I said in the opening statement, summer really does deserve a great pasta salad. I for one am team vinaigrette not team mayonnaise. You may notice if you browse thorough the blog, that mayonnaise doesn't feature often. It's around, just doesn't have a huge roll to play in this little ol' blog of mine. For my money you can't beat the refreshing flavours of fresh vinaigrette dressings in the summer.
Unless you flash back more than 20 years ago to a salad I ate my weight in and loved every single bite. Every single time. You can find out about that summer and that salad if you click here and you feel like boring yourself by going down my memory lane. It was a great salad and an even greater summer. What would we do without our memories?
Don't worry I am not about to get all nostalgic and go down my summer memory late for the the past, oh say, 45 years. But there sure have been some good ones, some great ones, and those I would like to forget....ha! Of course, food always played a part in my summers. Taste and smell is what always brings the brightest memories for me. To this day, I ride my bike past a house that smells like the basement of a house I lived in when I was 12. Thousands of miles away, across an entire ocean and it a foreign land it still has that same musty old smell. Like if I close my eyes, I feel like that is where I am. I have no idea why, but it just does. And every single time, I remember that time, that basement and playing for hours that summer with my Barbie dolls. Yes, I still played with them when I was 12.
Okay, enough memory lane stuff. Let's move onto food.
This was so good, I could have eaten all of it easily. Luckily, I had help so I was saved from self destruction. Literally, this was another clean out the fridge meal that turned into a blog post. That doesn't happen often, but when it does I feel quite proud....ha! I love making meals from what is on hand and do most of my cooking that way these days. Quite often the off hand in a hurry meals are more successful than that the preplanned meals. Does that ever happen to anyone else or just me? I like to think I am not alone in creating goodness from the all the dredges of the fridge.
So what about this salad. Well, it's a pretty easy and basic summer pasta salad. As I said earlier, it's a vinaigrette based salad which makes it a great one for summer pot lucks and picnics. It took me just over 15 minutes to have this done from start to finish, which makes is a quick one as well. Who doesn't love quick.
We ate this as soon as it was ready. mostly because I was starving and I lack patience. But it is much better after refrigerated for an hour or so. As my 10 pm eating session last night would tell you.
I used basic can black olives because it was what I had in the cupboard. However, if you happen to have some great olives, use those and I am sure they will bring the salad to a whole new delicious level.
As for the dill, use as much as you like and don't use dry dill. Please, use the fresh stuff. This salad relies heavily on the fresh dill for flavour, so don't skip it.
A great salad and one you might like to keep in mind for the long summer months ahead.
Happy salad making friends and hold on to your memories.
Mediterranean Pasta Salad
Serves 6 / Prep time: 15 minutes / Cook time: 10 minutes
7 oz/200 grams of farfalle pasta
1/2 Cup/90 grams black olives, sliced
1 Cup/110 grams feta cheese, cubed
1 Cucumber, peeled & diced
1 Pint cherry tomatoes, halved
4 Strips bacon
1/4 Cup/15 grams sun dried tomatoes, finely chopped
1/4 Cup/60 ml Olive oil
1/4 Cup/60 ml White wine vinegar
2 Garlic cloves, crushed
2 Teaspoons sugar
1/2 Teaspoon salt
1/2 Teaspoon black pepper
1/4 Cup/4-5 Sprigs fresh dill, chopped
Cook pasta in boiling water for about 8 minutes. Drain and rinse with cold water. Set aside.
In a medium skillet set over medium heat, cook the bacon for a 2-3 minutes per side. Remove from pan, drain on paper towels and cut into small pieces or crumble by hand. Set aside.
In a small bowl combine the olive oil, vinegar, sugar, salt, pepper and fresh dill. Whisk to combine.
Add the pasta to a large salad bowl. Add the olives, feta, cucumber, tomatoes, bacon, sun dried tomatoes and the vinaigrette. Stir well to combine. Top with extra fresh dill if desired. Can be served straight away. For best results, refrigerate for about an hour.
Click the downloadable link below to print recipe!
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