Italian Caprese Rotini Salad

Caprese Pasta Salad - Italian Pasta Salad Recipe

What does Caprese mean or refer to?  It means a simple Italian salad, with ingredients like fresh mozzarella, fresh basil and tomatoes.  You can use a whole wheat verson Rotini pasta for a heartier salad, has a nuttier flavor and high in fiber.  The crushed red pepper is optional of course, some like it spicy and some do not, so keep that in mind when preparing this dish.  Hope you give this Caprese Pasta Salad Recipe a try.  Its a lovely Italian Recipe, very quick and easy to put together in minutes. 

Instructions:

1) Cook the Rotini pasta according to package directions.  Season with salt. After cooking the pasta, drain and reserve 1/2 cup of cooking water. 

2) Using a large non stick pan or skillet, heat up the extra virgin olive oil, saute the garlic, and red pepper flakes. 

3) Then add the cherry tomatoes and saute for 2 minutes with the garlic and red pepper flakes. 

4) Once the pasta is cooked and drained, add to the skillet with the tomatoes.

5) Mix in the mozzarella cheese, and fresh chopped basil, and season with black pepper and salt to taste. 

6) If mixture is a bit dry, you can add a little bit of the reserved pasta cooking water. 

7) Toss together well, and serve.  

Ingredients: 
  1. 1 (16 ounce) Package of uncooked Rotini pasta
  2. 2 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  3. 2 cloves garlic, minced
  4. crushed red pepper flakes to taste (optional)
  5. 1 1/2 cups grape tomatoes, sliced in half
  6. 1/2 pound about 8 ounces of fresh mozzarella, cut into half inch pieces
  7. fresh basil leaves, cut thinly
  8. black pepper to taste
  9. salt to taste
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