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Any good cold pasta salad recipe?

All the cold pasta salad I have tasted were kinda mehhh...I am thinking about making it for my upcoming bbq. Any great recipe otherwise I will probably skip.
Thanks.

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    1. I also like the one that onrushpam suggested.

      As well as this one for Orzo with Roasted Vegetables.

      http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/in...

      And here are a bunch of other threads discussing it...

      http://www.chow.com/search?query=past...

      1 Reply
      1. re: valerie

        I second Ina's orzo with roasted veg. I like to do large crumbles of feta instead if cubes.

        1. re: susan1353

          I just made this the other day and loved it, so fresh. I think bottled salad dressings have given pasta salad a bad wrap. I always hated them before I started making my own. Soooo easy...

          1. re: Gloriaa

            Yes exactly..I HATE bottled Italian dressing! So bland and blehhh..

            1. re: Gloriaa

              Bottled salad dressings have given salad in general a bad rap. I never even have the stuff in the house.

              1. re: JonParker

                I feel the same way about marinated artichokes, peppers, sundried tomatoes....it is so hard to find them marinating in olive oil without dried herbs, capers etc...I have to marinate all my veg or it will have that old taste. I find they use way too much oregano.

          2. I made this one up years ago. A family favorite now.

            Ang’s Pasta Salad

            Cook about 1 and 1/2 cups of Rotina (multi-colored spiral-shaped pasta) according to package directions. Rinse and drain well.
            Cook 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (I sprinkle with seasoning salt and throw them on the grill).
            Chop chicken breasts into bite-size pieces and add to drained pasta.
            Rinse and drain one can of dark red kidney beans and add to pasta/chicken.
            Drain one can of black olives. Cut each olive in half and add to pasta/chicken.
            Pour in about 1/2 a bottle of Italian dressing (shake well)
            Add extra chopped garlic (to taste)
            Add fresh ground pepper (to taste)
            Add about one cup of Parmesan Cheese (not the dry stuff in the green can!)
            Mix well and refrigerate overnight

            1. I love this couscous salad from Chow. It's especially good with the addition of wilted kale and peppadew subbed for the piquillos.
              http://www.chow.com/recipes/29671-spa...

              4 Replies
              1. re: JungMann

                Using pesto instead of mayo is a good trick.

                1. re: humbert

                  last summer I made a pasta salad where I mixed one jar of prepared pesto with a cup of plain greek yogurt for a last-minute mashup (shells, mozz, artichokes, cherry tom, olives) and it was tasty. Garnished with toasted pine nuts.

                  1. re: humbert

                    Reminds me if Ina Garten's pea and pest pasta salad. Another great recipe!

                  2. re: JungMann

                    I guess kale will add some color and texture. this recipe is definitely a bit different than classic pasta salad.