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MEDITERRANEAN PASTA SALAD

Well summer is finally here with warmer days, parties and picnics. I have 2 special parties coming up, a birthday party for my oldest grandson and a “Welcome Home” Party for my oldest daughter and family who are moving home from a 3 year stint in Hong Kong. ( I am just a little excited to have them home!)

I am starting to plan a menu for the Welcome Home party and figured that a gluten free Mediterranean Pasta Salad would be one of the dishes. 
If you didn’t know before, let me tell you that I love a Mediterranean twist to most salads plus lots of crunch.
Here’s what I came up with : 

Mediterranean Pasta Salad

Ingredients

• 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
• 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
• 5 cloves garlic minced or pressed
• 1 TBSP dry oregano
• 1 tsp Greek Spice
• 1/2 teaspoon Himalayan pink salt
• 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
• 450 grams spiral or shell pasta noodles cooked, drained and cooled
• 2 15- ounce cans quartered artichoke hearts (in water)
• 1 each yellow and orange peppers, diced
• 8- ounce pitted Greek olives, halved
• 1 English cucumber cut into cubes
• ¼ red onion thinly sliced
• 1 cup crumbled goat feta cheese(you can use a Vegan substitute here if desire)

Method

Dressing

In a small bowl add the olive oil, vinegar, garlic, oregano, salt and pepper and whisk well to combine. Let it sit and blend while you assemble the salad.

Salad

Add the cooked pasta, artichoke hearts, red and orange peppers, Greek olives, cucumber, onion, and 2/3 of the feta cheese to a large bowl. Pour the dressing over top and lightly stir to mix. Refrigerate for 30 minutes or longer to let all the flavours combine. When ready to serve, sprinkle with remaining Feta cheese.

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