Sunday, August 30, 2009

Jake's kick-ass lemon-feta pasta salad

I discovered this recipe on last spring and I'm treated like a god every time I make it ... especially by my husband, who I get the feeling is staying with me only because I occasionally make a double batch for him.

It takes about an hour to whip together, but it keeps for at least a week (if it lasts that long). And the zesty lemon flavors mellow nicely after the first day. Plus it's low-fat and full of vegetables, so it's completely made of the awesomeness!

2 teaspoons grated lemon peel
4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (you'll need two lemons)
7 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons whole grain mustard
2 garlic cloves, minced

12 ounces penne pasta (or try multi-color rotini)
2 cups chopped tomatoes
1 1/2 cups chopped red bell peppers
1 cup chopped green onions
1 1/2 cups fat-free crumbled feta cheese

Boil penne until tender but firm. Drain. Rinse with cold water a couple times, drain thoroughly and put the colander of pasta in a large bowl in the refrigerator to chill and continue draining.

Zest and juice lemons. Whisk oil, lemon juice, lemon peel, mustard and garlic in a small bowl.

Chop tomatoes (drain off extra juice), peppers and onions and toss in a large bowl with feta cheese and chilled penne. Pour half the dressing over the mix, toss, pour the other half over the mix and toss again. Season with salt and pepper, cover, and chill for at least an hour before serving.

For a more authentic Greek flavor, you can also add sliced black olives and chopped cucumbers.

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