If you love pasta salad like me, You could probably eat this whole bowl like I could. But when half the noodles are zucchini…then go right ahead and eat it all. So when deciding what to call this new addition to my collection of great pasta salads, I decided on the Guilt Free Pasta Salad because it seems fitting.
I was going to call it tre colore after the famous 3 color salad on many Italian restaurants because it’s made with a white pasta (bucatini) a green, wild garlic pasta, and of course the zucchini noodles which are both white and green…but then I thought that this wasn’t the main feature. The point was to make a skinny version by adding zucchini noodles and so…what’s in a name anyway. You can call it whatever you like. But what I know for sure…once you make this…you’ll want to make it again and again because it can always be slightly different depending on what you choose to add to the noodles. And with all the veggies coming into season, you’ll have lots of delicious variations.
And when it comes to noodles…I’m loving that they’re long and not short thick pasta which tends to overwhelm the rest of the ingredients.
The sauce however, is always the same. A classic oil and garlic sauce…with a few spoonfuls of mayo.
Ingredients (feeds about 4)
1/2 lb of bucatini (or other long pasta)
2 medium (or 3 slim) zucchini – spiralized
1 cup frozen baby peas – defrosted
4 oz. fresh mozzarella – diced
1/4 cup grated parmesan
12 kalamata olives – diced
12 grape tomatoes – diced
2 oz of shiitake mushroom – sliced
1 carrot – spriralized
2 medium cloves garlic – finely chopped
Pinch of red pepper flakes for heat – optional
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons mayo
Cook pasta according to package directions – drain, splash with cold water, set aside
Place a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add oil and heat until hot but not smoking. Add the zucchini noodles. Cook for about 60 seconds until just beginning to soften. Add the garlic and pepper flakes. Cook until they just begin to color. Remove from the pan, season and set aside in a large mixing bowl. Repeat with the mushrooms. (no need to add addition garlic). Add to the mixing bowl.
Add the pasta and the remaining ingredients to the mixing bowl. Add the mayo. Adjust to your liking. Toss. Season and serve or chill and serve later.