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                                                                                                                                                                                                                Makes 4 servings

Garden Pasta Salad

Simple to make, beautiful to look at, and totally delicious!  This is a basic salad recipe that I have made for years and rarely have used the same ingredients.  Everything is bite size so it's pleasant to eat.  It is very easily doubled and you can eliminate something if you don't like it or double it if you do.  I've also given a list of optional ingredients that you can add according to your taste.

Ingredients

 

         •  1 cup halved small tomatoes

•  1 small zucchini, halved lengthwise and cut into thin slices

•  2  green onions, cut into ½ inch slices

•  1 small bell pepper, cut into bite-sized pieces (or small colorful sweet peppers)

•  Fresh corn kernals, 1 ear

•  1 small cucumber, cut into thin slices

•  1 small bunch Romaine, washed, patted dry and cut into 1 inch pieces*

•  Parmesan dressing (below)

•  1 pkg (8 oz) pastapenne, elbow or your choice, prepared and drained (could even use tortellini)

•  2 boneless, skinless cooked chicken breasts, pan grilled or prepared your way, cut into 1 inch pieces

Instructions

1.  Gently mix the first 8 ingredients and set aside for 10 minutes.                                                                             

2.  Add the other ingredients and toss together; season with salt and pepper to taste.  Best if served soon.

Optional ingredients

•  ½ cup cooked chick peas, drained well.

•  ¼ cup chopped basil, cilantro or parsley.

•  ½ cup fresh kale or red cabbage, shredded or cut in bite sized pieces.

•  1 small avocado,chopped.

*Or your lettuce of choice.

Tips

You can prepare the first 7 ingredients and refrigerate for two hours before assembling.

Parmesan Dressing

A simple dressing for salads as well as vegetables.

•  ½ cup mayonaisse

•  ¼ cup olive oil

•  ½ cup fine shredded Parmesan cheese

•  2 garlic cloves, minced

•  2 Tbsp lemon juice

Place all ingredients in a bowl (if using immersion blender) or in a blender container.  Mix until smooth and creamy but don't overmix.

KEYWORDS

garden pasta salad, chopped garden salad

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