This Mediterranean Pasta Salad packs a lot of amazing flavors into each bite. From the peppery taste of fresh arugula to the salty appeal of Kalamata olives, preserved lemons and feta cheese, there is nothing bland or boring about this dish. Yet, its strong flavors aren’t overwhelming because they are tempered by the satisfying addition of penne pasta and fresh herbs.
This robust salad has enough presence to serve as a light, yet satisfying, main course – or it can act as the perfect complement to more neutral dishes, like grilled chicken breast or a mild white fish.
Weird ingredient alert! You can use fresh or preserved lemons to make this recipe. I recommend trying the preserved lemons because they add more intense flavor. You can either buy a make your own (affiliate link, I may receive a commission for any purchase made through the link) or easily make your own (in about a months time).
A word of caution, however, if you use preserved lemons, taste before adding additional salt. With the olives and feta you may not want any more.Tired of boring pasta salad? This Mediterranean Pasta Salad is a flavor explosion. Click To Tweet
- 1 pound penne pasta cooked according to package directions
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 Large tomato chopped with seeds and excess liquid removed
- 15 Large fresh basil leaves cut into thin strips
- 2 teaspoons fresh oregano leaves stems removed and chopped
- 1/2 cup Kalamata olives
- 1/4 cup red onion thinly sliced
- 1/2 cup preserved or fresh lemons chopped
- 2 cups fresh arugula
- 2 tablespoons Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese grated
- 3 ounces feta cheese cut into small cubes
- 3/4 cups extra virgin olive oil
- 1/4 cup white balsamic vinegar
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- To make the vinaigrette, whisk the olive oil, vinegar, lemon juice, and mustard together in a small bowl until blended smooth.
- Add olive oil and garlic to a cold pan and set heat to medium high. Sauté for approximately 2 minutes before adding chopped tomato. Cook for 3 minutes or until the tomato softens. Remove from heat.
- In a large bowl, combine the cooked tomato and garlic mixture with the basil, oregano, olives, red onion and preserved lemons. Add the cooked pasta, arugula and both types of cheese. Finally, add the vinaigrette and toss to combine.
- Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve. Season with salt and pepper to taste before serving.
Preserved lemons can be purchased here (affiliate link) or use fresh lemons.
PLEASE LINK UP TO THREE FOOD POSTS TO THE TASTY TUESDAYS’ LINKY PARTY!
- PLEASE follow the hosts of this party through one of their social media listed below. They will visit your post and pin it. Just pick one (or more) of the options below and please follow them.
- Please link up to three food-related posts that have never been linked up here before. Posts containing alcohol also will not be pinned.
- Place this button or a link to this post somewhere on your site–either on the actual post or on your sidebar or on your party page.
- As a thank-you for linking up, we will pin your recipe to the Tasty Tuesdays at Creative K Kids Pinterest board. Please follow the board to see all the great food recipes!
- Creative K Kids is not responsible for stolen images or the mis-use by others who have found your image through CreativeKKids.com.
- By linking up, you agree to let any of the hosts or co-hosts use your pictures and links if they decide to feature your post. Your photo may also be used for promotion on any of their social media outlets.
- If you include your e-mail in the linky form below you will be added to a weekly reminder e-mail when the link party goes live. Your e-mail will not to added to any other lists or given out.