I was really looking forward to creating this dish. With all the fabulous ingredients I was envisioning this was bound to be really good stuff!
This was my first time trying these brown rice noodles. I have not always been super impressed with whole grain pastas, but then I am not a huge pasta eater let alone a pasta afficianado. The taste and texture of these noodles, however, did not disappoint.
My skeptical nature can’t help but wonder how much nutrition the infusion of vegetable/plant matter contributes to the end product of cooked pasta, especially after the cooking water is poured off followed by a rinsing. Perhaps if it helps us feel better about what we are eating that is enough???
To optimize flavor I put together the dressing for this pasta salad first thing this morning and, other than shaking the carafe occasionally, left it on the counter at room temperature. My regular readers will not be surprised that because of my poor documentation habits the ingredients list may be incomplete and will rely on my flawed memory:
- basil infused vinegar (made by Faye)
- olive oil
- dried basil
- dried tarragon
- crushed celery seed
- dried parsley
- red pepper flakes
- black pepper
- basil salt
- caper juice
- agave nectar
I found these sweet cherry peppers at the store this morning. Perfect for today’s salad. A potter’s loop tool works great for cleaning out the seeds and connecting ribs on these small round peppers.
Somehow curly parsley survived in the jungle of this year’s non garden. It was a good addition to a pasta salad.
I envisioned using Halloumi in this salad but figured Mexican frying cheese might be an alternative. It was close but with a little less flavor, however, I couldn’t argue with the much lower cost. I thought the pieces might brown separately but they fused together. It was easily enough to re-cut into pieces after frying.
The possible components for this salad were endless, but when the bowl was full I thought it best to leave off a couple of the ingredients I had in mind. I used:
- sweet red cherry peppers
- yellow bell pepper
- jalapeño pepper
- red onion
- cherry tomatoes
- black olives
- marinated artichokes
- fresh parsley
I tossed the cooked pasta with some of the dressing and re-tossed with the addition of every few ingredients.
When all of the veggies had been added I seasoned with homemade basil salt and the rest of the dressing. I had intended to include tiny florets of raw broccoli and cauliflower and would have if there were more mouths to feed. We both went back for second helpings and there was still some left over.