Do you ever go somewhere, and it sparks old memories? Whether it’s the taste of food, the smells that you are surrounded with, or just the surroundings… something just seems to click and you find your mind wandering back to that previous experience. That happened to me last week while I was eating an Italian Sandwich in the middle of Windmill Winery…..
I remembered the Antipasto Salad that I made as part of a picnic lunch when a group of us went roaming the countryside in Iowa a few years ago searching for a winery that was quite literally in the middle on nowhere, lol
This is not just your ordinary Italian Pasta Salad tossed with a few vegetables and Italian Dressing. This is a hearty salad that is loaded with all of the meats and vegetables that you would find on an antipasto platter, tossed with cooked pasta and a light dressing.
Antipasto Salad would traditionally be served first, at the beginning of the meal. Personally, I quite enjoy it as a full meal. All of your food groups are covered, and the leftovers keep beautifully in the refrigerator….and I haven’t even gotten to how incredibly easy it is prepare, it’s super, super fast!!
Cook, drain and cool your pasta. I used Rotini, but your favorite will work just fine.
Seed and cut your bell peppers into thin strips…..
Toss them into an extra-large mixing bowl. Now slice your pepperoni and salami and onion into thin strips…..
Ask the person behind the deli counter for a 1/2 pound slice of smoked turkey, then slice it into strips…..
I sliced them a second time horizontally across the middle. You can also cut them into bite sized chunks if you prefer. Toss your sliced meats into the bowl.
I sliced the tomatoes…..
and mozzarella pearls/balls in half…..
and I forgot the add the black olives! Slice them or leave them whole and toss it all into the bowl.
Whisk the dressing ingredients together in a small bowl or measuring cup…..
Add the cooled pasta to the bowl, drizzle with the dressing and toss to combine…..
Sprinkle the shaved Parmesan on top, toss to combine and you’re ready to serve…..
All you need now is a nice glass of Pinot Noir and you are set. 🙂
- I did sprinkle some chopped Italian parsley over the top to add some color, but that is optional.
- You can also add artichoke hearts if you like.
- I am not kidding about the extra-large mixing bowl. Grab the largest bowl that you can find!
How simple was that? You might even have time to make dessert….like an Affogato…..
or a delicious Amaretto Tiramisu…..
|Prep time||15 minutes|
|Cook time||10 minutes|
|Total time||25 minutes|
|Meal type||Main Course, Salad|
- 1 Pound rotini pasta (cooked, drained, and cooled)
- 1 Large green bell pepper (seeded and cut into strips)
- 1 Large red bell pepper (seeded and cut into strips)
- 1 Large yellow bell pepper (seeded and cut into strips)
- 1 Medium onion (sliced into thin strips)
- 1 cup cherry or grape tomatoes (cut in half)
- 1 cup black olives (sliced or cut in half)
- 1/4 Pound salami (cut into strips)
- 1/4 Pound pepperoni (cut into strips)
- 1/2 Pound smoked turkey (cut into strips)
- 6 Ounces fresh mozzarella pearls/balls
- 1/2 cup shaved Parmesan cheese
- 3/4 cups extra virgin olive oil
- 1/3 cup red wine vinegar
- 1 Large clove garlic (pressed or finely chopped)
- 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
- sea salt and black pepper (to taste)
|Whisk dressing ingredients together in a small bowl or measuring cup and set aside.|
|Place all salad ingredients into an extra large mixing bowl.|
|Add the dressing and toss to combine.|
This recipe will be partying at these link parties!