Mediterranean Pasta Salad with California Ricotta and Feta
Author: Meals Matter California Milk Advisory Board
Recipe type: Salads
Great for picnics and barbeques. Make ahead.
- For the dressing:
- ½ Large red onion, (about 5 ounces), finely chopped
- ¼ cup + 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (about 2 lemons)
- ¼ cup Finely chopped fresh oregano leaves (or, use 1 tablespoon dried oregano)
- 3 tbs Finely chopped fresh dill, (or, use 2 teaspoons dried dill)
- 2 tbs Red wine vinegar
- ½ cup Extra-virgin olive oil
- Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
- For the salad:
- 1 lb Fusilli (corkscrew) or penne pasta
- ½ pint Cherry tomatoes (or approximately two dozen), halved
- 1 English cucumber (about 12 ounces) quartered lengthwise,
- Then sliced crosswise ¼ inch thick (alternatively, use 2 medium cucumbers, peel and seed them, cut as directed)
- 1 cup Kalamata olives, (about 4 ounces) pitted and halved
- alt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
- 1½ tsp Red pepper flakes (optional)
- ¾ cup (6 ounces) California Ricotta cheese
- ¾ cup (4 ounces) crumbled California cow's milk Feta cheese
- 1 oz Crumbled Feta cheese, for garnish
- Combine all dressing ingredients except for the oil, salt and pepper.
- Slowly whisk in the oil until it is thoroughly combined with the other ingredients. Season with salt and pepper.
- Let stand for at least 30 minutes. (Can be made the day before and refrigerated.)
- Bring 3 quarts of water and 1 tablespoon of kosher salt to a boil.
- Add the pasta and cook for 10 minutes, or until the pasta is tender but still slightly firm to the bite.
- Drain (do not rinse) and let cool to room temperature, mixing occasionally.
- When cool, place in a large bowl and add the dressing.
- Using a wooden spoon, gently mix until the dressing is well distributed.
- Add the remaining ingredients except salt and pepper and 1 ounce of Feta for garnish.
- Let stand for ½ hour.
- Mix well and season with salt and pepper.
- Top with remaining crumbled Feta and serve.
Calories: 465 Fat: 24g Saturated fat: 6g Unsaturated fat: 1.9g Carbohydrates: 47g Sodium: 458 mg Fiber: 2g Protein: 13g