Total time: 20 minutes
- 1 box (16 oz) shell pasta
- 1 tablespoon canola oil
- 2 tablespoons cider vinegar
- 2 cups grape tomatoes, halved
- 1 can (8 oz) artichoke hearts, drained and halved
- ½ lb fresh mushrooms, sliced
- ½ cup canned tuna, chunked
- 1 jar (4 oz) pimentos, drained and chopped
- 1 cup whole black olives, drained
- 1 cup chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- ½ lb pepperoni, shaved and quartered
- ½ lb Provolone cheese, cubed
- ¼ cup red onion, finely chopped
- Salt and black pepper
- Zesty Italian dressing, bottled
- Oregano or parsley
- Grated Parmesan cheese, if desired
- Cook shell pasta as directed on package; drain and rinse in warm water.
- Coat pasta with 1 mixing spoon of oil and the vinegar.
- Gently toss in remaining ingredients; salt and pepper, to taste.
- Chill for an hour or, better, overnight.
- Just before serving, toss entire salad with Italian dressing, to taste.
- Spoon into serving bowl; sprinkle with oregano or parsley for color.
- Serve topped with grated Parmesan, if desired.
Chilling the salad helps merge the flavors.
I tried to re-scale the recipe down to two. Ugh . . . what a mess . . . and what's the point of making it for only two? This salad is meant for parties, family gatherings, good times, barbecue, and beer.
You can substitute tortellini for the shell pasta. Tortellini makes a heartier dish, but will increase the calorie count.
You can use cubed ham or turkey or Pepperoni Minis instead of the shaved pepperoni. Also, any dressing will do well; but some dressings, like raspberry vinaigrette, may color the pasta.
Go slowly with the dressing. You want just enough to coat the ingredients to taste. If you use too much, your salad will be sitting in a pool.
Make the salad the day before, then let it sit in the fridge overnight so the flavors blend nicely.
Store tightly covered in the refrigerator.