In the last two weeks we have been through senior award nights, choir concerts, piano recitals, graduations, grad parties, talent shows, kids returning from college, end-of-school events, Cafe Mela performances (involving CheffyK’s son) and tomorrow is the culminating dance recital that marks the end of the 2012-2013 school year. On top of that, there have been plumbing problems, motorcycle malfunctions, and shingles showing up on little ones, all in the last two weeks! Okay, just one little one. Still, you get the picture. So, today I, CA, will be sharing with you one of my favorite summer salad recipes. This is an old stand-by and you can bet it has already made an appearance several times in the last two weeks (mostly in the form of “leftovers,” which my son says I “have a way with.”).
This is one of those recipes you must improvise and taste as you go. I will share the ingredients, but the rest is up to you. Remember, I’m not the chef. I’m just the mom who has been throwing together meals every day for the last 20 years.
- Pasta. Your favorite. I love to use penne and I generally choose a whole grain or non-wheat version.
- Sausage. My oldest daughter is is a vegetarian, so I choose a high quality seitan product with Italian seasoning that can be found in the produce section of many grocery stores. Any Italian sausage would be delicious.
- Sundried tomatoes.
- Fresh roma tomatoes.
- Kalamata olives.
- Feta cheese.
- Fresh garlic.
- Mini sweet peppers.
- Red onion.
- Balsamic vinegar.
- Olive oil.
- Always salt and pepper to taste.
I cook the pasta a bit al dente. I like the way it holds up in a salad when it has a bit of a bite to it.
The sausage I slice at an angle and fry in a dry pan until cooked through. (CheffyK would put a bit of olive oil in the pan.)
The sundried tomatoes, roma tomatoes, kalamata olives, pepper0ncini, garlic, mini peppers, and red onion I slice as thinly as I am able.
Then, I toss it all together with feta, balsamic, olive oil, salt, and pepper.
It’s amazing. Always a hit, and requires no special know-how.
You are the master of this creation! Have fun. You seriously can’t go wrong.
P.S. Every time you see the word “Olive” I typed “Oliver.” Oliver is my youngest son’s name. Oliver oil? I once submitted a recipe to a contest with that ingredient.