Pasta…or salad? As it turns out, you don’t have to choose. This caprese pasta salad has all the beloved flavors of the Italian antipasto (juicy tomatoes, creamy cheese, fresh basil and bright balsamic vinegar), plus the picnic-friendly portability of a cookout side.
See ya never, sad, gloppy mayo.
Caprese Pasta Salad
Servings: 8 servings
1 pound orecchiette
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
¼ cup balsamic vinegar
½ teaspoon Dijon mustard
½ teaspoon honey
½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
8 ounces mini mozzarella balls, halved
1 small bunch basil (about 10 large leaves), plus more to garnish
1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook the pasta to al dente, 9 to 11 minutes or according to the package directions. Drain the pasta and rinse under cold water until cool.
2. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine the vinegar, mustard, honey, ½ teaspoon salt and ½ teaspoon pepper. While whisking constantly, slowly pour in the olive oil to incorporate.
3. Chiffonade the basil by stacking the leaves and rolling lengthwise into a cigar, then thinly slicing widthwise.
4. In a large bowl, combine the tomatoes, basil, mozzarella, pasta and dressing until well coated. Taste and adjust the seasoning as needed. Garnish with more basil and serve at room temperature or chilled.