Herbed Spinach Pasta Salad

2 Jun

herbedspinachpastasalad001Today, I bought a new ‘spice rack’.  There’s been a big agricultural fair at City Hall plaza, near my new house, these past few days, and I keep prowling past all the herbs and plant pots for sale with wishful eyes.  This one, though, was a winner.  It doesn’t take up much horizontal space, it’s stable on its base (for a minimum of cat-related damages), and it’s terribly easy to angle around each segment as needed.  I grabbed the stand, then promptly bought basil, rosemary, and golden lemon thyme to occupy it in my sunny window.  I figure the plants are a lot cheaper than buying the fresh herbs at the grocery store, only to have half of them spoil before I can use them due to getting too cold or too wet or too dry in the fridge or on the way home.  My fridge, by the way, is a beast at freezing things. I haven’t yet quite figured out how to turn the thermostat in there up a bit so it stops icing my water and destroying my green produce.

Anyway, with all these fresh herbs on hand, I decided it was time to make one of my old standby recipes again, a super easy pasta salad.

herbedspinachpastasalad002

Ingredients

4 cups fresh spinach, rinsed and coarsely chopped
4 cups cooked pasta (farfalle, penne, or conchiglie work well)
2 cups cooked chickpeas, drained
3/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
1/2 cup sliced black olives
1/4 cup pine nuts
1/8 cup avocado or olive oil
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp fresh basil, finely chopped
1 tbsp fresh lemon thyme, finely chopped
2 tsp minced garlic
1 tsp sea salt
dash of black pepper

herbedspinachpastasalad003

Mix all ingredients in a large bowl. Start with the spinach first, and make sure the pasta is freshly-drained and still hot when you toss it into the bowl–the heat will partially cook the spinach and ensure the flavors of the herbs and feta blend throughout.

Serve still warm, for best flavor.

Serves 6.

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4 Responses to “Herbed Spinach Pasta Salad”

  1. Quinn June 2, 2013 at 3:04 pm #

    lemon thyme–is that a specific herb, or a manufactured one? The spice rack is so clever.

    • oddvocado June 4, 2013 at 2:30 pm #

      It’s a varietal of thyme, as I understand it, with a lemony hint to the flavor. This particular ‘golden’ type has variegated leaves.

  2. Jimmy Cracked-Corn June 4, 2013 at 2:08 pm #

    I think you’re going to need to start new pots of basil regularly to keep that thing manageable. Maybe not, maybe you just have to cut it back hard.

    • oddvocado June 4, 2013 at 2:31 pm #

      I’ve never grown it before, so I suppose I’ll find out! If nothing else, I’ll have a regular supply of fresh pesto.

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