Monday, December 17, 2012

Pasta Salad with Pesto Sauce

I'm posting this recipe today because it's the perfect side dish for a Holiday Buffet.  Pasta Salad with Pesto is one of my Aunt's recipes and a family favorite.  It has all the components of a perfect side dish: meat, cheese, pasta, and nuts and it's green.  Every year my Aunt and Uncle host a holiday party for about 35 family members.  I have been fortunate to grow up with a fabulous Aunt who has taught me to cook and entertain.  Need I say more.

Pasta Salad with Pesto Sauce

For Pesto Sauce
2 cup of fresh basil
1/2 cup of pine nuts or walnuts (use walnuts)
1/2 cup parmesan cheese - freshly grated
3 cloves garlic (more if cloves are small or to taste)
3/4 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
1/2 tsp black pepper
Salt & Pepper to taste

Grind cheese in processor.  Add basil, garlic, nuts and process until fine.  Add oil through opening and process until smooth.  Add vinegar, process about 5 seconds.

l lb of pasta - Twists are best
3 cups of swiss cheese cut julianne (1/4 slices)
3 cups of boiled gam cut julianne (1/4 slices)
1/2 cup scallions - chopped
1/4 cup chopped walnuts
1/2 cup frozen peas, rinsed to defrost

Cook pasta and drain.  Add scallions and toss.  Add pesto and toss.  Finally add ham, cheese and nuts and toss.  Save some nuts for garnish.  Serve chilled or at room temperature.

This recipe makes a lot.

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