Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Easy Pesto Pasta Salad

This is an easy fun recipe. My daughter introduced me to this pasta salad when she was in college, a local pizza place made it, and we have made it since then. It is great because you can add in anything you want. Anyone who knows me, knows I am not a good cook, but this one is a no fail recipe.

This is a cold pasta salad. However, you can make it, serve it hot (add cheese when serving). Then cool, and add fresh parm, and serve as a leftover.

-Pasta of your choice, (the restaurant uses penne rigatone, I have also used bow tie). I do like the carb friendly pasta, but that is a dietary choice.

-Your choice of pesto, I have tried the store brands, but always come back to Classico, love the garlic in it.
-1 bag of steam in bag broccoli florettes.
-Fresh Parm, and some jarred parm.
-Tomatoes, olives, chicken, pepperoni, anything you might want to add in.
-Cook your pasta. Steam your broccoli. Drain pasta, then pesto to pasta while warm, stir in cooked broccoli (if broccoli is watery drain first). Add as much pesto as you would like, I cooked 2 cups of pasta and used about 1/2 a jar of pesto. Now cool in fridge. **this is the point you can serve warm for dinner, and add cheese as needed. Otherwise cool in fridge.
-After it has cooled, add a tablespoon of the grated parm from jar (you know like you use on spaghetti). Then a handfull of the fresh parm and mix it up. This is to taste.
-Now any add-ins you want. Olives (my personal fav, but was out), tomatoes, pepperoni, chicken, you name it, you add it. Put back in fridge and serve cold.
Great to just grab out of fridge and eat.  Enjoy.


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