Early this spring a good friend of ours gave us some tomato plants. She said that she had far more than she needed and wanted to give them a good home.
We didn't have to think twice about accepting them. There is nothing more delicious on earth than tomatoes fresh off the vine, with the warmth of the summer sun still on their skin.
We planted them in plastic pots and right now they are producing abundantly, beautiful little cherry tomatoes, so full of flavour I could eat them just like, well . . . cherries!! A handful of these tasty little gems and I am in heaven!
The other night I made a tasty pasta salad with some of them as well as a roasted cherry tomato sauce to pop into the freezer for another time.
Today you get the salad. Enjoy!
*Incredibly Tasty Pasta Salad*
Serves 6 to 8
Not only is this a wonderfully easy side dish for these hot summer evenings, but if you chose to add a bit of cooked chicken or ham, or even some cheese, you would have a really tasty salad main course! The dressing is phenomenal and makes more than you need, but that's ok, once you taste it you will always want to have a bottle of it in your fridge ready to use for other salads! This tangy sun dried tomato dressing will keep about a week, covered, in the fridge
For the Vinaigrette:
1/4 cup (50ml) drained oil packed sun dried tomatoes
2 TBS good quality Balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup (125ml) cold water
1 fat clove of garlic, peeled and minced
1 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp caster sugar
1/4 tsp black pepper
pinch of salt
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
For the Salad:
8 ounces pasta, cooked, drained, rinsed in cold water and drained again
1 punnet of cherry tomatoes, halved
1 medium red pepper, chopped
1 medium yellow pepper, chopped
1/2 English cucumber, peeled and chopped
3 to 4 spring onions, trimmed and chopped
2 1/2 ounces of dry cured black olives, pitted and chopped
1/4 cup grated Parmesan Cheese
1 TBS chopped flat leaf parsley
Put all the ingredients for the vinaigrette into a blender and blitz until fairly smooth and well blended. Set aside. Mix the pasta, vegetables and olives together in a large bowl. Add 1 cup (8 ounces) of the salad dressing to the pasta mix and gently mix together. Stir in the Parmesan cheese. Sprinkle the chopped parsley over top and serve immediately. You may make this ahead and keep it stored in the refrigerator. Just add a bit more of the dressing before you serve it.