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Sun Dried Tomato Basil Pasta Salad | www.tasteandtellblog.com

I wanted to post something sweet because I have some really good recipes waiting to be posted, but more importantly, I wanted to get an entry into Ruth at Once Upon a Feast for the 6-month mark for Presto Pasta Nights!!

I was looking for an easy side dish for dinner this past weekend, and after searching through many of my cookbooks, nothing was really speaking to me. So I went online and looked at the recipes I have bookmarked, but still, nothing was speaking to me. Then an online search – at allrecipes.com – and within seconds I found what I wanted to make.

This pasta salad is not only very simple and fast to make, but it is good served either hot or cold. It would be great for a picnic or pot luck, as you wouldn’t have to worry about keeping it warm. Or cooked at home, you can serve it warm along with your dinner. My husband preferred it warm, right after it was made, but I liked it both ways.

I don’t have a food processor (maybe for my birthday next month?) so I just put everything in the blender and mixed it that way, adding olive oil until it was a pesto consistency. I then stirred it into the warm pasta. The original recipe calls for orzo, but for some reason, the store I went to did not carry it. So my husband chose mini shells for this. I think it would have been good with orzo, but I actually think I would prefer it with the mini shells because they worked with the sauce really nicely.

Sun Dried Tomato Basil Pasta Salad
adapted from allrecipes.com

2 cups uncooked pasta
3/4 cup fresh basil
1/2 cup chopped sun dried tomatoes, packed in oil
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese, plus extra to serve on top
3/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon ground pepper

Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook until al dente. Drain and set aside.

Place basil and sun dried tomatoes in a food processor or blender. Pulse 5 or 6 times until combined. Add cheese, salt and pepper. Add olive oil in a stream until a pesto consistency is reached.

Combine pasta and sauce. Serve with a sprinkling of Parmesan cheese.


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18 Responses to Sun Dried Tomato Basil Pasta Salad

  1. Patricia Scarpin says:

    I’m glad to hear you made it without the food processor, Deb – I don’t have one either.

    It looks delish!

  2. Mandy says:

    this dish looks yummy. I am another one without food processor. I painstakingly chopped the basil and nuts with a knife yesterday. It took at least 15 minutes. Why I didn’t think of using a blender!

  3. Brilynn says:

    I like shell shaped pasta best because of all the sauce that gets trapped inside. This looks great!

  4. Kevin says:

    Sun dried tomato pesto is great.

  5. Valli says:

    A great entry for Presto Pasta Nights anniversary. I had wanted to do something for the roundup…but c’est la vie!!! This pasta looks wonderful and as you said is easy to prepare with few ingredients and still tastes incredible.

  6. Anh says:

    This is a simple and delicious dish. I love this type of recipe. Will try it soon!

  7. KJ says:

    This looks really good. Basil always adds such a lovely fresh taste.

  8. Ruth Daniels says:

    Fabulous salad and I’m with you…lttle shells to catch all the pesto…what could be better?!

    Thanks for bringing it to the Presto Pasta Night big six month bash.

  9. Janet says:

    A delicious and simple idea. I had to live for about 3 weeks without a food processor. Mine broke and I got a new one for my birthday. It was tough, I guess I didn’t realize how much I used it. So beware! It’s like a microwave… once you get one, you will NEVER be able to NOT have one!

  10. Kelly-Jane says:

    I have a processor, but it depends on my mood if I use it or not!

    Looks lovely, mmmm.

  11. Cynthia says:

    You have motivated me to try making this pesto.

  12. sher says:

    Oh, this looks fabulous! And I broke my food processor yesterday! Oh well. I did without one for years.

  13. Belinda says:

    This sounds really good, Deborah, I love sun dried tomatoes. And I agree that your husband made a great choice with the little shells for the sauce. :-)

  14. JennDZ - The Leftover Queen says:

    Lovely! Anything with sundried tomatoes has got my vote!

  15. Judy says:

    What a tasty sounding and looking meal.

  16. Kate says:

    I think the mini shells work just fine.It really allows the sauce to stay inside making it moist…yumm more sauce .

  17. Sophie says:

    Pretty! This sounds like just the job taking to work for lunch if it tastes just as good cold.

  18. Ilva says:

    Neither do I, have a food processor I mean! This pasta salad must be just perfect!

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