Pasta salad is one of the most delicious side dishes in my opinion. It is a summer food that pairs perfectly with everything from burgers to chicken to mile high sandwiches. The key to amazing pasta salad is using the freshest veggies and fruit during the peak of the season.
I start with a nice hearty pasta cooked al dente such as a penne or rotini. Then I combine the following in a large bowl:
-A container of mixed rainbow cherry tomatoes, 2 small zucchinis sliced into half moons, 1 red pepper thinly sliced, 1 cup corn sliced off the cob, a few green onions sliced finely, 2 ripe, firm peaches sliced, 2 cups chopped rotisserie chicken (optional), and a handful of fresh basil and cilantro chopped.
Now, you can put just about any homemade dressing on top but this one tastes perfect with this salad:
Combine 1/2 cup shredded Parmesan, 1/2 cup EVOO, juice and zest of a lemon, 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar, 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic, 1 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/4 cup chopped cilantro, and 1/4 cup chopped basil. Pour over mixture, combine, then fold in your pasta. Enjoy!!!