It's substantial enough to be a main dish, yet still light enough to qualify as warm weather fare.
1 pound bow-tie or wagon-wheel pasta
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup white wine vinegar
1 teaspoon salt, or to taste
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, or to taste
6 slices bacon or turkey bacon, cut crosswise into 1/2-inch pieces
1 pint small red cherry tomatoes, halved
1 pint yellow cherry tomatoes, halved
1/4 cup finely chopped chopped fresh parsley
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh basil
3 cups finely shredded romaine lettuce to line the serving bowl
How to Make It
Cook the pasta in a large pot of boiling, salted water, according to package directions. Drain completely and place in a large bowl. Stir in the olive oil, vinegar. salt, and pepper; let stand for 15 minutes or until mixture reaches room temperature. (Can be prepared to this point up to a day ahead, once cool, cover and refrigerate to store.)
Cook the bacon in a 10-inch skillet over medium heat, stirring frequently, until crisp. Drain on paper towels.
Stir the bacon, red and yellow tomatoes, parsley, and basil into the pasta mixture. Just before serving, adjust seasonings to taste.
To Serve: Line a deep serving dish with the shredded lettuce, top with the pasta salad, and serve at room temperature.
How kids can help: Mix all ingredients and assemble the salad.
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