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Recipe: Fresh Mediterranean Pasta Salad

Pasta salad is a summertime staple. It’s quick to make, universally enjoyed, and affordable. The only downside to the usual pasta salad? Gobs of mayo, and overcooked pasta.

You’re not going to find either of those things in this recipe!

IMG_0630[1]This salad uses extra virgin olive oil and lemon juice; the juice from the fresh tomatoes also adds moisture. And for the pasta, I tend to use only Barilla brand. I think they are the best commercial brand out there, and you can choose from traditional, whole wheat or mixed.

The real star of this dish, though, is the produce. You can add a huge burst of flavor, color and nutrition with the creative use of veggies of all kinds. In this particular version, I used what I had on hand, but the variations are endless. Read the rest of this entry

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Recipe: Salade Niçoise with Rosemary Vinaigrette

My Dad worked for General Electric all his life — back when people still did that. During part of his tenure, he belonged to an international division that led to his moving the whole family to Europe for several years. So I was fortunate to experience the vastly differing cultures of Holland, northern Italy and southern France before it was time to return us Stateside after 6 years.

Europe lagged behind the new food trends that were taking place here — Tab and Fresca, marshmallow Fluff, Pop-Tarts, Jiffy Pop, 1-2-3 Jell-o, Carnation Instant Breakfast, Tang, Underwood deviled ham, and the revolutionary Chef Boyardee Pizza Kit. Poor kids, we didn’t get to eat any of these things, and were stuck with the meals our Mom made from scratch three times a day, using local ingredients and recipes.

I have so many memories of the comparatively exotic dishes that we ate during that time, but one that came to my mind recently was Salade Niçoise. salade nicoise without the tuna

Read the rest of this entry

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