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Old 03-28-2008, 12:52 PM   #1
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Cold Layered Pasta Salad - Rec Ideas

This is one of my fave cold pasta salad dishes for a take-along to bbqs, picnics, or when it's too hot to cook. Here's the basic idea, that I change out w fresh veggies in season, salad dressings of choice & I add more cheese & dressing. The recipe doubles well, adjust the seasonings to taste. I serve it in a large clear V-shaped bowl, but a clear trifle dish will work too.

Layered Picnic Pasta Salad

Other ideas/add-ins:

Shredded cheese - sharp cheddar, monterey jack, colby, feta, or mozzarella/parm combo
Roasted sweet red peppers
Marinated artichoke hearts
garbanzo beans
sliced black olives
Tomatoes - halved cherry, romas, pear or grape
sliced hard boiled eggs
Steamed and cooled asparagus
Diced or thinly sliced red onions
Salad dressing of choice - There are lots of choices out there, Italian, creamy cucumber, etc
Pancetta or bacon
diced avaocado

As a main dish other possiblities as add-ins
tuna
salmon
shrimp
crab

Pasta - I prefer bow ties or cheese-filled tortelinni, but you could change it out with other med shaped pasta of choice or cheese-filled ravioli.

Just a few ideas to play around with. Enjoy.

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Old 03-28-2008, 08:19 PM   #2
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What a pretty salad, Amy! Thanks for the great spring-time ideas!

I use the same type of bowl too! It also looks pretty when you make a layered taco salad.
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Old 03-28-2008, 08:34 PM   #3
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I use Bottled Italian dressing, and I use a lot. The pasta (I like tricolor rotini or bowties) really soaks it up.

Other ingredients:
Canned diced tomatoes INCLUDING JUICE...makes all the difference
Sliced green and black olives
sliced mushrooms...fresh are best, but canned are OK
coarsely chopped green and red peppers
Canned artichoke hearts, chopped coarsely
Chopped sweet onion
julienned salami or summer sausage
salt and pepper to taste
fresh grape tomatoes for garnish

It needs to be refrigerated for 4 hours before you eat it. I usually make it the day before, and add the grape tomatoes when I serve it.
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Old 03-28-2008, 09:59 PM   #4
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Amy, my goodness the salad looks delicious. Thanks
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Old 03-28-2008, 10:31 PM   #5
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Wow, that sounds like what we call our antipasto pasta salad. We add almost anything mentioned which is the stuff one finds in an antipasto.

Usually toss in some diced kielbasa. And maybe some pepperoni.

OK, it is not pure Italian but neither am I.

But it adds a really nice flavor.
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Old 03-29-2008, 03:50 AM   #6
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I love dressing my cold pasta with tuna fish, peas and carrots.
And of course, olive oil.
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Old 03-29-2008, 04:55 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jkath View Post
What a pretty salad, Amy! Thanks for the great spring-time ideas!

I use the same type of bowl too! It also looks pretty when you make a layered taco salad.
You are very welcome. I agree, the layering & a clear pretty bowl makes a nice presentation. Enjoy.
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Old 03-29-2008, 04:58 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by JoAnn L. View Post
Amy, my goodness the salad looks delicious. Thanks
Love these layered pasta salads, especially during the summer months. Pretty much the only cooking involved is preparing the pasta. Enjoy.
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Old 03-29-2008, 05:01 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by auntdot View Post
Wow, that sounds like what we call our antipasto pasta salad. We add almost anything mentioned which is the stuff one finds in an antipasto.

Usually toss in some diced kielbasa. And maybe some pepperoni.

OK, it is not pure Italian but neither am I.

But it adds a really nice flavor.
Another fan of antipasto pasta salad. For me, it's entire meal. Yum. I may have to try it with a citris-Vodka dressing I came across. (Will post the link when I have a chance.)
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Old 03-29-2008, 05:06 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by Finmar001 View Post
I love dressing my cold pasta with tuna fish, peas and carrots.
And of course, olive oil.
I enjoy cold tuna, peas & pasta as well. I prepare it in a big dutch oven with tri-color rotini , black sliced olives, onions, & a bunch of goodies; & keep it in the fridge to nibble on for a few days. Yum, tuna.
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