Whole Wheat (Gluten free) Pasta
I always consider Friday’s my cheat day. Mostly as a celebration that I got through another week and I deserve to splurge and buy myself a coffee instead of making it at home like every other day. That’s my definition of cheating. Cheating on my Keurig and new orange summer travel coffee cup. Until recently, that was the only cheating I did on a weekly basis. Now, I get even crazier and cheat on my leftover dinner from Thursday nights and buy lunch on Friday’s as well as coffee. Pretty rebellious, I know. It’s a time saver in the morning to not have to prepare them both. On top of that, it’s even more freeing to know I can use my mini Marcie Crossbody Chloe bag and be able to fit all the necessities in it sans tupperware and a travel cup.
During yesterday’s what-to-get-for-lunch dilemma, my good friend Francesca or F, but definitely not Fran, and I were out and about scoping out our options. We went to a deli, a corner bakery across the street, then back to the deli and finally made decisions. Chicken noodle soup to ease a case of the rainy Fridays for F, and a turkey avocado wrap for me.
While we were waiting in line with everyone else that was out to get lunch in New York City, I noticed some delicious looking pasta salad behind the counter at the deli. I asked F if she’s ever made it. She said she has and it was in fact her Thursday dinner leftovers that were in the dark being cheated on that Friday afternoon. We talked about what she put in it and I asked a few questions. I’ve never really been a salad kind of gal, except the normal green kind and occasionally chicken.
It wasn’t until very recently that I really gave it an honest to goodness chance when Mrs. Sheri made it over Memorial Day weekend. I was shocked to see that eating pasta that comes out of the refrigerator rather than a pan didn’t actually freak me out like I would have thought, and for many years it did.
That brings me to today’s recipe: Pasta Salad!
Of course I already have uncooked pasta in my cabinet, as it is inexpensive and let’s face it, NYC ain’t cheap! I only buy whole wheat pasta since I have the mindset that if I eat white pasta I’m putting life threatening toxins in my body. Melodramatic. I’ve been on a gluten free kick lately too so I also have summa dat. Just make sure you don’t cook it too long, it has a tendency to get a little mashed potato-esque if you know what I mean..
Since I had to be at work this morning at 7:30 (on a Saturday, whhhaaatt) to deal with a photoshoot, so glam, I had the whole rest of the day to put some serious thought into this pasta salad that I will be devouring this later evening. I made a stop at Whole Foods to grab a few extras. Note: I don’t usually go to Whole Foods, but when I’m feeling extra fancy I’ll make an exception. I bought some spinach, celery, fresh mozzarella (motzadella if you’re Italian, which I am via father but I am also American so I stick with the former), cherry tomatoes, and a bottle of Herbes de Procence Vinaigrette dressing. Fancy.
I figured with the mozz and cherry tomatoes I was going on a margherita kick so I might as well get some basil. Then! I saw there were beautiful green petite basil plants on sale for $1.99! Score! Why buy the milk when you can buy the whole cow! Right? Well whatever it is, I have another wonderful smelling plant to add to my NYC fire escape garden.
When I started the prep-sesh, I decided I would take a picture of the beautiful colors from all the veggies and such together. Please note, it is much easier to cut everything up separate and take it off the cutting board so there’s room to actually cut everything. When I got down to the pepper and onion, it got a bit squishy. I had peas, carrots, a green pepper and an onion in my fridge of wonders so I figured why not throw those in too! That’s the best thing about cooking for yourself, just put in everything you have and hope for the best! Also, do you know how long it takes one person to finish a whole onion..
So cook the pasta. I gave the spinach a quick chop to make it a little smaller and mixed it in with the warm pasta so it would soften down a bit. Put those in the fridge for a bit. Mixed in all the veggies, s&p, and dressing and voila! The finished product!
Let me know how it works for you or if you add anything else that made it wonderful!