This spring pea and asparagus pasta salad is what has kept me going all week long. With a ton of unusual expenses piling up on us, I’ve been trying to only cook with whatever we already have in order to save a few bucks. Even though I’m not usually a huge pasta person, I somehow have about five 1/2 full boxes of pasta in my pantry, so I figured out a way to make a light meal that won’t weigh me down or make me feel sluggish.
Pasta salad is a great dish to improvise with. Learn how to make a great, simple, standard dressing (another thing easily improvised) and then mix together whatever you’ve got on hand with some pasta, toss it in the dressing, and sprinkle it with a little cheese. Voila! It’s insanely easy.
In this particular instance, I had a can of garbanzo beans, frozen peas and some fresh asparagus (ok, so I bought one thing). I clipped a few herbs from my garden to jazz things up a bit, and in no time I had lunch for the entire week. Perfectly portable, healthy, and filling. Maybe I need to rethink my stance on pasta after this.
- 1 tablespoon chopped parsley
- 1 tablespoon chopped chives
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 teaspoons minced shallots
- 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
- salt and pepper
- 1 can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
- 8 ounces uncooked pasta, I used elbows
- 1½ cups asparagus, chopped to ½ inch pieces
- 1 cup fresh or frozen thawed green peas
- 3 ounces parmesan cheese, shredded
- In a large bowl whisk together parsley, chives, olive oil shallots, and dijon. Add salt and pepper to taste.
- Meanwhile, prepare pasta according to package instructions. Add asparagus and peas during the last 2 minutes of pasta cooking time. Drain well.
- Add pasta and vegetables to the dressing bowl. Add garbanzo beans and parmesan and toss well.
**Recipe adapted from Cooking Light