Unless you’re keen on eating salads every day, cooking summer foods can be a little trickier than fall + winter foods. Most people want to avoid turning on the oven and eating a heavy meal before venturing out into the heat can make you feel absolutely horrible. If you aren’t someone who grills all the time, summery recipes can be few and far between… which always leads me to incorporating some form of zucchini –one of the lightest, yummiest veggies– into my dishes.
Pasta salad is a little overdone as a side, but jazzing it up with a little quinoa pesto? Sounds like a little more interesting than your average version! I’ve made this for my weekday lunches and would definitely take it to a BBQ or potluck. You can totally use regular pesto but since they were sold out, I sprung for this and was pleasantly surprised. Why not sneak a little extra protein into your dish, you know?
Zucchini & Pesto Pasta Salad
Feeds 4-6, depending on how hungry you are
– 3 cups cooked corkscrew pasta
– 1 large zucchini, chopped into small pieces
– 1/2 cup crumbled feta
– a few tablespoons Trader Joe’s Pesto + Quinoa (just enough to coat all the pasta; regular pesto is just fine!)
Cook pasta al dente and allow to cool, if possible. Drizzle in olive oil and stir in pesto. Add in zucchini and feta and stir until combined.
Photos by Monica Dutia