June 12, 2013

Antipasto Pasta Salad

It's officially summer for me!  I finished up in my classroom today, and am now footloose-and-fancy-free for the summer.  Yay!  I don't have all my summer adventures figured out yet ... but I'll get 'em figured out soon, I'm sure.  And I'm sure some of those adventures will include a cookout or two!  Oh, I'm sure you're thinking hot dogs ... or hamburgers ... or a nice juicy steak.  But when I think summer cookout, I think pasta salad.  Yes, pasta salad.  I'm all about the sides!  And this no-mayo Antipasto Pasta Salad is one of our cookout absolute favorites.

One of the {many} things I love about this colorful and flavorful pasta salad is that it's dressed with a homemade vinaigrette dressing that's super tasty.  And since there's no mayo involved, it's a fabulous option to take along on picnics or to serve at an outdoor event.

Chock full of our favorite antipasto fixin's ... like salami, pepperoni, mozzarella cheese, olives, tomatoes, and artichokes ...it's one beautifully eye-catching salad!

I mean, seriously, don't you just want to grab a fork and dive right in?  Can't wait for a fork?? ... oh go ahead, use your fingers.  I won't tell.


I use hard salami from the grocery store deli in this salad, but you could use any variety you like.  I order 1/3 of a pound of salami at the deli, and ask them to slice it really thick for me ... like this:


... so there's only about four or five slices in the 1/3 pound.  Then I chop those big ol' thick slices up, along with some turkey pepperoni and mozzarella cheese ...


... and toss it together with pasta, antipasto fixin's, and the homemade vinaigrette.

And then I've got myself one super yummy, totally gorgeous, colorfully delicious, eye-catchin' and crowd pleasin' summer side ... with or without the burgers and dogs.

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Antipasto Pasta Salad
Source:  A Tracey original


Ingredients
Salad:
  • 3 c. uncooked rotini (corkscrew) or penne pasta
  • 1 (6 oz.) package sliced turkey or regular pepperoni, cut into quarters
  • 1/3 lb. thick-sliced hard salami, cubed
  • 1 pint grape or cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 c. green olives, halved
  • 1/2 of a medium red or Vidalia onion, finely chopped
  • 1 red, yellow, or orange sweet bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 (1 lb.) block mozzarella cheese, cubed
  • 1 c. marinated artichoke hearts 
Dressing:
  • 1/3 c. red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 c. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 T. granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. black pepper
  • 1 1/2 tsp. dried oregano
  • 1 1/2 tsp. dried basil
  • 1/4 tsp. Italian seasoning
Directions
  1. Cook pasta in boiling salted water, according to package directions. Drain. Rinse under cold water, and drain thoroughly.
  2. Combine the quartered pepperoni slices, cubed salami, cubed mozzarella cheese, halved tomatoes, chopped onion, chopped bell pepper, halved olives, and artichoke hearts in a large bowl. Add the cooked pasta and stir to combine.
  3. In a separate small bowl, whisk together the red wine vinegar and granulated sugar until the sugar is dissolved. Add the olive oil, salt, pepper, oregano, basil, and Italian seasoning and whisk to combine. Pour the dressing over the pasta mixture; toss to coat.
  4. Serve immediately, or cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.
Note:  This recipe makes a big salad - cut the recipe in 1/2 if you don't want to make a lot.
Also, substitute bottled Italian salad dressing if you'd like.

Enjoy!

13 comments:

  1. Hi Tracey,
    I haven't seen your blog in awhile. Please post this great salad of yours tomorrow at my party. My recipe will be a antipasto platter so your salad will go with it really well.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for popping by to visit me, Diane! I'll come over and link today. :-)

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  2. This sounds so good. Perfect for a summer lunch or dinner on these very hot days.

    Thanks for sharing.

    Wishes for tasty dishes,
    Linda
    Tumbleweed Contessa

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We eat this as our main course for dinner, A LOT, in the summer, Linda. I love that I can make a huge batch and eat it for several days!

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  3. Oh my goodness! This is my favorite food and this recipe looks like it is perfect! I am pinning to make this weekend!

    Cheers,
    Julia
    It's Always Ruetten

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. One of the beauties of this salad is you can change it up with different antipasto favorites. Enjoy it, Julia!

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  4. Hi Tracey! Thank you for sharing this delicious recipe! I was searching for one that uses a homemade dressing and this is the type dressing I was looking for! Have a great summer off! Blessings from Bama!

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    Replies
    1. I'm so glad, Felecia. The vinaigrette dressing is so good!

      Delete
  5. Your pasta salad sounds wonderful! I'm pinning your recipe so I can make it for a picnic this summer! :)

    ReplyDelete
  6. Hi, this looks so good! I saw it on manic monday.
    Julie from julieslifestyle.blogspot.com

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  7. Yes, I totally want to grab a fork and dig right in! Wish I had a big bowl of this for lunch today!

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  8. I love all of your recipe's Tracey! I shared this one in particular on Cutie Pies facebook fan page! I just love pasta salad. Looking forward to seeing more of your amazing dishes!

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  9. My family loves this pasta salad. I've been making it for years. The only thing I add in addition to yours is a mashed up clove of garlic to the dressing!
    Christine

    ReplyDelete

I love your comments. I read and appreciate each and every one. Thank you so much for visiting The Kitchen is My Playground! {NOTE: Captcha word verification is on to turn away the 'spambots' ... I apologize for the commenting inconvenience!}

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