Humbly delicious, refreshing, and hey…it’s cold!
I don’t know about you, but cold spaghetti pasta salad is now one of my favorite lunch to eat in summer.
They sell it everywhere, in cafes, in restaurants, in food courts (ok…food halls) and is the best “go to” meal….whenever you’re spoiled with too many unhealthy choices.
This is especially true when you head to the shopping mall with your kids, after school, and waiting for her next tutoring class.
Yes, my daughter has reached an age where we needed to put her through tutoring lessons (Asian parents, right?), but we’re only doing it because we wanted the best for her future.
I mean…that’s what parent’s do, right?
We do our best to protect them, to provide for them and lead them into the right path.
My daughter goes to tutoring every Tuesday and Thursday. Not straight after school. There is a 1 hour gap in between, from 3pm-4pm. So after we picked her up from school, we would take her to get some food just so that she can freshen up and have enough energy to last up to 8pm.
(Yes, that’s how long her tutoring lessons goes for…from 4pm-8pm, poor thing!)
We normally take her to a nearby shopping mall (we actually call them shopping centres here..). And I’m not sure how it is in the United States or other countries that I’ve never been to, but in Australia, the food courts are filled with many “not so” healthy foods.
I mean things like deep fried chickens, fish and chips, calorie overloaded burgers (I don’t actually count it), greasy chinese takeaways, kebabs, KFC, McDonalds, and the list goes on.
As a “responsible” parent (right???), we try our best NOT to feed our kids too many of these, no matter how yummy they are. I mean, besides the obvious, you just never know what really goes behind the scenes.
Plus, there’s only so much junk foods you can eat before your mouth becomes a train wreck. Even my daughter agrees (Thank God!).
So lately, she’s been addicted to a healthy cold pasta pasta that’s made with spaghetti, fresh herbs and tomatoes. I loved it, she loved it, our whole family loved it.
It doesn’t feel heavy at all because you can often tell when something makes you bloat and tired, so we’ve been eating these a lot lately. My only concern is whether these guys we buy from actually uses extra virgin olive oil.
After all, business is business and in the commercial world, cost cutting is an important factor to consider, so in saying that, I don’t really blame them even if they do in fact use a cheaper diluted version.
That’s exactly why I decided to make my own and It wasn’t even hard to make.
The whole process was so quick and easy that I kind of feel stupid for not to come up with this cold pasta recipe any sooner. It tastes just the same as the ones we bought from the healthy shop, if not, better…HA!
This is what I came up with:
Cold pasta is the perfect summer dish using spaghetti, mixed fresh herbs and tomatoes with added garlic, lemon and lime juice, giving it a truly refreshing taste!
- Spaghetti Pasta - 500g
- Fresh Parley - 1 cup (finely chopped)
- Fresh Mint - 1 tbsp (finely chopped
- Fresh Rosemary - 1 tsp (finely chopped)
- Garlic - 4 cloves (finely diced)
- Red Tomato - 1 qty (diced)
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil - 4 tbsp
- Lemon Juice - 1 quarter (squeezed)
- Lime Juice - 1 quarter (squeezed)
- Salt and Pepper - according to taste
To prepare pasta - Boil a pot of salty water (yes, water with salt added to it) and then add your spaghetti (500g) into the pot. Give it a little stir and allow to boil for 10 mins, or until cooked.
To prepare pasta mixture - In a large bowl, organize and then add in all the pasta mixture (see ingredients above) and mix thoroughly.
To make the cold spaghetti - Add cooked pasta (prepared earlier) straight into the large bowl with the pasta mixture (prepared earlier). Stir well using your tong.
Let it sit for about 10mins, cling wrap and place the whole bowl into the fridge.
Take out after 1 hour and your cold spaghetti pasta is ready to serve.
Can I prepare the pasta beforehand?
Hmmm...you can, but I just like to add the HOT pasta into the mixture because the heat will release the aroma from the mixed herbs, garlic and the acidity from the lime and lemon juice. YUM YUM YUM!
Can I use a food processor for the mixture?
Of course, this is actually what I prefer to use, whenever I feel lazy. Just make sure you don't go overboard and turn the mixture into a puree. You want the nice little chucks of the tomatoes because it gives a really lovely texture to this dish.
So there you go people!
If you have been wondering how to make a cold pasta salad from scratch, then you’ve got the recipe right there.
The truth is this combination goes superbly well with ANY kind of pastas. Whether it is spaghetti like what I have used here, fettuccine, penne, linguine, just any pasta that tickles your fancy.
You can also add in some diced zucchini if you like, some cucumbers, capsicums, or any type of fresh salads to make your pasta even more tasty, nutritious and healthy.
The best part is, you will save a lot of money doing it yourself. Yes!
I’m not sure about other countries, but in Australia, one medium sized container sells for about $10. Now imagine if a whole family was to eat one of these…each, you do the simple calculations.
And how much does a pack of pasta cost these days? Like $1??
What about tomatos? (You really only need to dice one to make 4 portions)
The herbs? (They’re pretty cheap!)
Extra Virgin Olive Oil? (You only need a few tablespoons)
Salt & Pepper? (Come on mate…)
Garlic? (Ok…I think you got the point.)
So to make 4 portions that’ll ensure your family gets fed properly (really enough). It’ll only cost you a few bucks.
Whereas if you are eating these 2 times a week, like we do during those “waiting” period before my daughter goes into tutor, these costs can really add up.
Call me stingy or whatever, but budgeting is an important part of raising a family.
And by doing the cooking yourself, you’re also raising a healthier family….RIGHT?
So go figure…