Sun-Dried Tomato Pasta

This dish is one of my all time favorites.  It’s so simple, but so full of flavor.  I would recommend pairing this one with a side of vegetables or a big side salad because besides the tomatoes (which are technically a fruit!) it’s pretty lacking in the vegetable department.  The recipe originally comes from the Barefoot Contessa, but I had to modify it quite a bit…the original recipe calls for 1 lb of cheese!

Sun-Dried Tomato Pasta– slightly adapted from Ina Garten

1/2 pound whole wheat fusilli pasta

1/3 lb part-skim mozzarella cheese, cubed

10-15 olives, diced (I used black but feel free to use green or kalamata if you prefer them)

3 medium tomatoes, diced

6 sun-dried tomatoes (packed in oil), drained, rinsed and diced

1/3 cup Parmesan cheese, grated

1 cup packed basil leaves, sliced (I used about 1 tbsp. dried basil instead)

The dressing:

2 tbsp. red wine vinegar

6 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil

1 garlic clove, crushed

5 sun-dried tomatoes (packed in oil), drained, rinsed and diced

dash of salt & pepper

1 tsp. capers (I omitted this)

Instructions:

  1. Cook the pasta in a large pot of boiling water with a splash of oil to keep it from sticking together. Boil according to the directions on the package. Drain well and allow to cool.

  2. Place the pasta in a bowl and add the tomatoes, olives, mozzarella, and chopped sun-dried tomatoes.

  3. For the dressing, combine the sun-dried tomatoes, vinegar, olive oil, garlic, capers, salt, and pepper in a food processor until almost smooth.

  4. Pour the dressing over the pasta, sprinkle with the Parmesan and basil, and toss well.  Serve cold.

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