orecchiette caprese salad lizbushong.com

From pasta to pizza, simple caprese flavors such as fresh basil, mozzarella, tomatoes and olive oil makes summertime entertaining easy.  Orecchiette pasta, meaning “little ears”, has a unique domed shape, smooth on the inside and grooved on the outside.  So much fun making a salad with this pasta for the dressing gathers in the mini shells.  Perle mozzarella, toasted walnuts, garlic, cherry tomatoes, fresh basil, parsley and chives  marinate 30 minutes to infuse the bottled Italian dressing before adding the drained pasta.  A dash of sea salt and ground pepper adds just the right garnish before serving.

Orecchiette Caprese Best Side Salad lizbushong.com

Recipe for Orecchiette Caprese

Ingredients:

1 cup Italian dressing, purchased or make your own

1/4 teaspoon honey or sugar, optional

1 clove garlic, minced

1/2 cup perle mozzarella balls

6-8 cherry tomatoes, halved

red onion slices, as per taste and size

1/2 cup chopped walnuts, toasted

1 tablespoon each fresh basil, parsley, chives, diced

6 -8 ounces dried orecchiette or small pasta of choice

dash sea salt and ground black pepper

Instructions:

  1. In small skillet with 1/2 teaspoon olive oil, toast chopped walnuts until lightly browned.  Set aside.
  2. In small mixing bowl add dressing, sugar, garlic, mozzarella, cherry tomatoes, onion, basil, parley, and chives, allow to marinate for 30 minutes at room temperature.
  3. Meanwhile, cook pasta according to package.  Drain liquid and add to dressing marinade.  Toss to coat.
  4. Sprinkle with sea salt, and pepper before serving.
  5. Serve chilled or at room temperature, but keep covered in refrigerator until serving.

Yield:  4-6 servings

Go to lizbushong.com to print recipe.

 

Another Idea you might like to try: Lemon Orzo Spinach Salad 

Lemon-Spinach-Orzo-Salad-recipe lizbushong.com

Or Try these Lemon Cooler Cookies

Lemon Cooler Cookies lizbushong.com

Need something creamy and cold?  Try Nutter Butter Parfaits 

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About Author

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Liz Bushong is an expert in the three-dimensional art of entertaining. She transforms simple dining occasions into beautiful and memorable moments by adding a touch of her own “sassy” style. For the past several years Liz been entrusted to decorate the White House for several Holidays. She is a featured monthly guest chef/designer on WCYB TV 5, WSLS10-Daytime Blue Ridge and other television shows. Liz is the author of Sweets & Savories cookbook as well as past contributing writer for VIP Seen and Bella magazine. See recipes and ideas: lizbushong.com and social media. Liz is offering a free download of Black and White Creative Table-scape Ideas when you subscribe to lizbushong.com.

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