Herb & Cheese Pasta Salad
(by Reeni, Vinaigrette adapted from Bobby Flay)
8 ounces pasta (like Barila Whole-grain Medium Shells)
6-8 ounces Swiss Cheese, 1/4-inch cubes
1 - 6 ounce can Black Olives, halved
1 cup Grape Tomatoes, halved
1/2 cup Red Onion, thinly sliced
1/4 cup Pickled Sweet Cherry Peppers or Fresh Bell Pepper, thinly sliced
1/2 cup Fresh Basil, cut into a chiffonade or chopped
1/2 cup Fresh Parsley, cut into a chiffonade or chopped
1/4 cup Fresh Sweet Aussie Basil, chopped
1/3 cup Fresh Lemon Thyme
1/2 cup Fresh Grated Parmesan
Sea Salt and Fresh Black Pepper, to taste
1/3 cup Olive Oil
4 large cloves Garlic, chopped
3 tablespoons Red Wine Vinegar or Lemon Juice
Sea Salt and Fresh Black Pepper
1. Cook pasta to al dente according to package directions. Drain and rinse with cold water.
2. Meanwhile make the vinaigrette. In a small skillet or saute pan heat the oil over medium-low heat. Add the garlic and saute until the garlic becomes fragrant and just begins to turn color at the edges. Remove from heat, whisk in vinegar. Allow to cool. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
3. In a large mixing bowl toss the Swiss cheese, olives, tomatoes, red onion, peppers and pasta together.
4. Add the herbs, Parmesan and cool vinaigrette. Toss well. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Refrigerate until serving. Best made a day ahead of time.