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Courier Cookbook Summer Pasta Salads

It is BBQ season! One delicious side dish at every BBQ is a summer pasta salad. Chock full of vegetables, flavor and a dish you make ahead of time. Enjoy just two examples here.


Adapted from Once Upon A Chef by Jenn Segal

Submitted by Alyson Varvel Bell

"A go-to summer salad that everyone loves!"


1¼ lbs (2 pints) cherry or grape tomatoes, halved

4 shallots, thinly sliced

5 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed

¼ cup extra virgin olive oil, plus more for serving

2 teaspoons salt

1½ teaspoons sugar

1 medium zucchini, cut into ¼-inch chunks

1½ cups fresh corn kernels, from 2 ears corn

12 oz fusilli (or similar shape) pasta

3 tablespoons unsalted butter

1 teaspoon herbes de Provence (or thyme)

⅛ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

½ cup grated pecorino romano cheese, plus more for servin

½ cup tightly packed basil leaves, roughly chopped

⅓ cup pine nuts, toasted


1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Line a baking sheet with heavy duty aluminum foil.

2. Combine the tomatoes, shallots, garlic, olive oil, salt, and sugar on the prepared baking sheet.

3. Toss with until the vegetables are evenly coated. Arrange the vegetables in a single layer and roast for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the tomatoes are just starting to brown.

4. Remove the pan from the oven and add the zucchini and corn. Toss with a rubber spatula and spread into an even layer. Roast for 5 minutes more, until the zucchini and corn are tender-crisp.

5. Meanwhile, cook the pasta in salted water until al dente. Drain. Add the roasted vegetables and all their juices to the pasta, along with the butter, herbes de Provence, red pepper flakes, pecorino Romano, basil, and pine nuts.

6. Toss well drizzle with olive oil, if desired. Serve with grated cheese.


Adapted from by Jamie Vespa

Submitted by Linda Chartier

"It's light and tangy... a perfect summer side dish."


2 Tbsp. unsalted butter

1 Tbsp. minced fresh garlic

1 cup dry orzo pasta

2 cups lower-sodium vegetable or chicken broth

3/4 cup marinated artichoke hearts, roughly chopped

1/3 cup crumbled feta cheese or shaved parmesan

1/4 cup sliced almonds or toasted pine nuts

1 tsp. lemon zest, plus 1 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice (from 1 lemon)

1/4 tsp. cracked black pepper

2-3 Tbsp. finely chopped parsley or basil leaves


1. In a medium saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Once melted, add garlic and cook for 1 minute, until fragrant. Stir in orzo and cook for 3 to 4 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the grains are lightly toasted and golden.

2. Add broth; increase heat to bring mixture to a boil. Once boiling, reduce to medium-low, cover, and gently simmer for 15 minutes until all liquid is absorbed.

3. Remove pan from heat and stir in artichokes, feta, almonds, lemon zest and juice, black pepper, and fresh parsley (or basil). Taste and add a pinch of salt, if needed. Serve warm, chilled, or closer to room temperature.

If making ahead, reserve 1 to 2 Tbsp. oil from the jar of marinated artichokes to stir in right before serving to help loosen up the grains.

Optional: Add cooked shrimp, salmon, halibut, or chicken to this salad. This recipe can easily be adapted to be vegan.

Thank you to everyone who submitted recipes to the Left Hand Valley Courier. Recipes are a fundamental way to share community along with having a great backyard barbeque.

Next week, in the spirit of spring, we will explore the world of brunch egg dishes. Submit your recipes to [email protected].


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