Posts tagged ‘artichokes’

June 22, 2011

Pasta Salad with Artichokes, Lemon, and Mint

by Alexa

I was feeling inspired by attending the Greek Festival in Central Square last weekend, so I came up with this vaguely Mediterranean pasta salad, full of artichokes, lemon, mint and feta.  I think it came out pretty well–it tasted very fresh and summery.

Ingredients I used:

  • approx. 6 oz pasta, cooked al dente (I used tricolor “Vegetable Radiatore” from Trader Joes)
  • 1 lb (I think…I threw the package away) sugar snap peas, strings removed
  • 1/2 lb green peas (I used frozen)
  • 1 can artichoke hearts, drained and chopped (14 oz)
  • 1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed (15 oz)
  • approx. 1 cup crumbled feta cheese
  • 3 medium cloves garlic, chopped
  • juice of one lemon
  • 1/3 cup mint leaves, chopped
  • dried oregano
  • few tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 cup yogurt
  • tablespoon or so of honey
  • salt
  • balsamic vinegar

What I Did:

  • My first step was to quickly blanch the snap peas–I tossed the pods in a pot of boiling water for about 2 minutes, then scooped them out with a slotted spoon and put them in a bowl of ice water to cool off. I cooked the green peas the same way.
  • Next, I cooked the pasta right in the same water.  More vitamins that way, right?
  • I heated a few tablespoons of olive oil in a pan, and sauteed the garlic until it was fragrant.  I threw in maybe 2 tablespoons of dried oregano, and sauteed a minute or so longer.  Then I removed the pan from the heat, and added the lemon juice.
  • When it was ready, I drained the pasta and tossed it with the lemon/garlic dressing, as well as the crumbled feta.
  • I added the mint, snap peas, chickpeas, and artichoke hearts and tossed some more.

I had intended to end the recipe there, but when I tasted it, I decided I wanted something a little creamier and tangier.  So I combined about 1/2 cup Greek yogurt, about 2 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar, maybe a tablespoon of honey, and a bit of salt and whisked it into a little extra dressing.  I think it was a nice touch.

I think this was a good basic method for a pasta salad, and I am sure all the vegetables could be easily substituted for others.  If I made it again, I would consider adding more mint and more lemon.  I also think that capers could be nice, or even some canned tuna, if you felt like taking it in that direction…

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