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Caprese Pasta Salad

August 6, 2011

This summer has been intensely hot in the midwest.  Too hot to use the stove, too hot to grill.  Needless to say, I’m ready for some cooler weather.  Besides the hot weather, work has been busy with extra traveling, which takes away from my cooking time.  August doesn’t look much better, sigh.

Here’s a nice summer pasta recipe: simple ingredients for a fresh taste of summer.   Unfortunately, the squirrels continue to eat my tomatoes.  The fresh little mozzarella balls are perfectly sized, but I usually end up dicing up a big mozzarella ball (like I did here).   For those who like more of a robust flavor, you should add a tsp or so of Italian seasoning blend.  In addition to the basil, I add Italian parsley (probably out of habit so I don’t even list it below), but it’s not necessary.  The olive oil & balsamic vinegar, as well as all ingredients, should be adjusted based on your taste preference (I say this because I would otherwise put, “or to taste” after each ingredient).  My husband is quite a fan of the balsamic, so it is generously added to his serving.  If I could ever think of it ahead of time, I would like to soak the tomatoes in balsamic vinegar, either overnight or a few hours in advance.

I encourage you to experiment with different pasta shapes.  Cavatappi, used here, is definitely one of my favorites.  It is a fun shape that holds the sauce & veggies.  This is one where you should definitely heavily salt the pasta water (it will evenly season the dish).  Enjoy!

1/2 lb short pasta, such as cavatappi
8 oz fresh mozzarella, chopped
2 cups grape or other variety of tomatoes, chopped
1 handful of fresh basil, chopped
1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
salt & black pepper
1 tsp Italian seasoning, optional


  • Cook pasta according to package directions.  Drain & rinse with cold water.
  • Toss pasta, tomatoes, mozzarella, basil, olive oil & vinegar.  Season to taste.
  • Refrigerate at least 1 hour before serving.  Serve with additional olive oil &/or balsamic.
Printer-friendly version here Caprese Pasta Salad.
3 Comments leave one →
  1. Sherry Dwyer permalink
    August 6, 2011 9:33 pm

    Gonna try it!! I love your recipes Laura.!

  2. August 6, 2011 10:42 pm

    We’re having the same issues in DC. The less cooking right now, the better. This looks light and delicious!

  3. August 7, 2011 4:33 am

    Might make this soon! I looks really delicious and fresh.

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