Spinach Pesto Pasta Salad
This is the ultimate summer salad: Spinach Pesto Pasta Salad with tomatoes, corn, red onion, fresh dill and feta cheese. It was inhaled by all and a salad that I will be making over and over the next few months!
Is anyone else boycotting the kitchen? I’m not boycotting it entirely but I’m surely avoiding the oven as much as I can. My kitchen doesn’t have great ventilation and it gets HOT in the afternoon. Even the grill seems to be too much for me at 6 o’clock when it’s 90 degrees outside. If it isn’t cold, already prepared or comes in a takeout container, it’s likely not going to appear on my kitchen table. And for the record, cereal and ice cream make a perfectly acceptable dinner when it’s hot as Haiti outside. Just ask my kids.
We did a camping trip last weekend and I spent the morning before we left preparing a couple salads and grilling off some chicken before we hit the road. While it seemed weird to be firing up the bbq at 8:30 in the morning, I wanted to beat the heat and make sure we had some food prepped before we left. Whenever we do a camping trip, I try to have as much done ahead as I can to make things easy when everyone is hungry. It got me wondering why I don’t do the same kind of prep when we’re home. (Answer: I’m lazy.) So the last two weeks, I’ve set a morning aside to bang out some prep to make things easier come dinner time when everyone is hungry and the last place I want to be is sweating in front of a stove.
This pasta salad sort of just happened. But the best ones always do, you know? It was a “clean out the fridge” kind of salad, adding a little bit of this and using up what I had on hand. Two ears of corn, a pint of cherry tomatoes, diced red onion, fresh dill (my favorite!) and tangy feta make up this throw-together pasta salad. The dressing is nothing more than a bit of Vegenaise (regular mayo would work just fine), a healthy dose of the homemade spinach pesto I made last week and a squeeze of lemon juice to round things out. Simple, fresh and the best of summer!
Unlike house guests, pasta salads get better after they sit day or two. Am I right or am I right? I’m SO right. Pasta salad is the ideal dish to make ahead to enjoy when it’s too hot and you’re too lazy to cook. Which pretty much sums up my attitude towards cooking the last few weeks. Add some cooked shrimp or chicken, a handful of beans or a scoop of hummus or even a fried egg and you can call it good. This is exactly how I want to eat when it’s hot out. Washed down with a cold glass of sauvignon blanc, please.
Know you could easily substitute the vegetables and herbs you use in this pasta- using up what you have on hand- though the combination of fresh dill, sweet corn and tangy feta is pretty hard to beat!
Have a great rest of the weekend, everyone and thanks for reading! xo, KelleyPrint
- 3/4 lb your favorite pasta
- 3/4 cup spinach pesto
- 1/4 cup Vegenaise or mayonnaise
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 cup diced cherry tomatoes
- 2 ears of corn, removed from cob
- 1/2 cup minced red onion
- 1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
- 3 tablespoons fresh dill
- salt and pepper
- Cook the pasta to manufacturers directions; drain.
- Meanwhile, make dressing by stirring together spinach pesto, mayonnaise and lemon juice.
- Add the vegetables, dill and feta to pasta salad. Mix thoroughly with the dressing, season with salt and pepper.
- Serve cold or at room temperature.