Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Summer Garden Pasta Salad

Pasta salads seem to be getting the cold shoulder from anything that doesn't resemble a party. It just doesn't seem fair! The only time I ever see one of the nice, cool and refreshing salads is at a potluck, family reunion, or other get together. I never saw that in the cooking rule book and I think it's time to bring the dish back to every day life.

I made a pasta salad the other day for lunch. Yes, lunch. There was nothing fancy going on that day, and it was a pretty normal Monday, but I just had the urge to make one and eat one. It was a little creamy, a tad crunchy, and after only four bites, I was full. Was it good? Yep. Was it that filling? You betcha!
I used a lot of vegetables for that summery feel and taste and I also used heart healthy whole grain pasta which, as I just found out, fills you up fast. I kept the dressing light by only using fat-free salad dressing mixed with a little mayo to get the creaminess that would stick to the noodles. This salad is definitely a keeper for those days when you want a light lunch that will fill you up without making you feel guilty.

Summer Garden Pasta Salad

1/2 of a 13.5 oz. package of Whole Grain Rotini Noodles
1/2 of a yellow pepper, diced
1/2 of a green pepper, diced
5 baby carrots (or 1 large carrot), julienned or diced
1 TB onion, diced
2 slices oven roasted turkey, thinly sliced
2 slices ham, thinly sliced
1/3 c Kraft Light or Fat-Free Zesty Italian Salad Dressing
1 TB mayo

1. Cook noodles according to package directions. 
2. Rinse noodles with cold water and drain completely. 
3. Mix dressing and mayo together in medium-sized bowl.
4. Add all other ingredients together and mix well.
5. Chill for about an hour.

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