Thursday, September 1, 2011

Greek Pasta Salad

I'm a total foodie.  I love everything about food, it's an experience involving all of the senses.  I love creating it.  I love making it beautiful.  I love smelling it.  I love sharing it.  I love watching/hearing someone enjoy it.  And most of all, I love tasting it!  Needless to say, when g-free entered my vocabulary, for a the first few days it felt like more of a death sentence than anything else.  However, that didn't stop me from enjoying food again.  I was (and still am) determined to make my g-free recipes taste just as phenomenal as the gluten filled recipes, if not better.  My g-free conversion this week was Greek Pasta Salad.  It was mostly born from a craving for a cold summer salad (not involving green leafy veggies, cause that all too often becomes my go-to lunch) and a combination of what was in my pantry and fridge at that particular moment.  I would possibly make a few changes in the future, but here's what I came up with (hubby helped himself to several servings, so it's safe to say it was a hit).

Greek Pasta Salad

1 Package Quinoa Elbow Noodles (I'm sure rice spirals would work wonderfully for this dish)
1 Package Chopped Grape Tomatoes
1 Can Chopped Black Olives
1/2 Cup Crumbled Feta Cheese
3 Tablespoons Chopped Italian Parsley
1 to 1 1/4 Cup Greek Salad Dressing (I used Ken's - from the ingredient label it seems to be g-free, and I don't react to it, but double check it if you definitely have Celiac)
3 Tablespoons Balsamic Vinegar
Olive Oil to taste
Pinch of Sea Salt & Black Pepper (to taste)

1. Prepare noodles as package instructs. Rinse noodles under cold running water and let dry.  (My quinoa noodles need a little longer to cook than the package says, otherwise they end up a bit too firm.)
2. Prepare chopped ingredients & set aside.
3. In a large bowl, combine noodles and wet ingredients.  Fold in tomatoes, olives, cheese, parsley, salt & pepper.  
4. Cill for 1 hr if you'd like for flavors to meld.  Otherwise - enjoy!

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