This Greek-inspired pasta salad is unexpected in all the best ways. Tomatoes and basil add fresh flavor and color. The salty olives and cheese are balanced with a Sweet Basil Vinaigrette.
How is it already Memorial Day weekend? By late May here we need very little excuse to have a barbecue, hang out by the pool, and sip cold drinks. We’re also several weeks in to seeking out meals that can be served chilled or at room temperature.
We’ve got lots of relaxing and hanging out to do this weekend, but we’ll also likely be eating what may be my favorite summer dish – pasta salad. I’ve got big plans for pasta salads this summer. I want to load them up with fresh things, good cheese, bright herbs, and in the case of this particular version, a Sweet Basil Vinaigrette that brings it all together.
I was so sad to see this pasta salad go last week that I’m planning to make more tomorrow. The salty feta and kalamta olives are a great balance to the sweetness of the dressing. I couldn’t get enough. Oh, and those pasta shapes are orecchiette. I highly orecchiette for your next pasta salad. They form such perfect little bowls for all of that delicious pasta salad dressing.
Enjoy the weekend!
- 1 pound orecchiette pasta (or other pasta of choice)
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- 1 pint cherry tomatoes, sliced
- 1 and ½ cups crumbled feta cheese
- 1 cup pitted Kalamata olives, sliced
- 10 leaves fresh Italian sweet basil, roughly chopped
- 1 recipe Sweet Basil Vinaigrette
- Cook the pasta according to package directions. When cooked, drain and run under cool water. Transfer to a large mixing bowl and add the olive oil. Toss well to coat the pasta in oil.
- Add all remaining ingredients, except for Sweet Basil Vinaigrette. Toss gently to combine.
- Add half of the Sweet Basil Vinaigrette and toss to evenly coat the pasta in dressing. Refrigerate the pasta and the remaining vinaigrette for at least an hour and up to a day. Just before serving, add the remaining half of the vinaigrette and toss gently. Serve.