This Italian-style pasta salad is basically all of your favorite fresh Italian flavors, topped with delicious crispy Parma Ham. A base of al dente pasta and fresh, crunchy greens topped with tomatoes, lightly toasted pine nuts, all brought together with a sweet balsamic dressing.
The delicious sweet and salty salad dressing perfectly clings to the pasta and salad leaves making a colorful, healthy, and absolutely delicious pasta salad.
It is easy to adapt to use up whatever you have in your fridge. For example, swap the goat’s cheese for parmesan. Exchange the cherry for sundried tomatoes. Swap the rocket for spinach leaves.
If you want to make a vegetarian version, swap the Parma ham for sauteed mushrooms or roasted chickpeas.
This is an easy weekday meal; the below recipe makes one hearty portion however you can double up the quantities and store in an airtight container for up to 2 days.
Pasta Salad with Parma Ham, Rocket and Tomatoes Recipe
- 75g Gnocchetti Sardi pasta
- 1 tsp olive oil
- 2 slices Parma ham
- 50g semi dried tomatoes in olive oil
- a handful of rocket (arugula)
- a handful of basil
- grated Parmigiano-Reggiano (Parmesan) cheese
- Bring a medium pan of water to boil, add in the salt and the pasta and cook as per the packet instructions.
- Meanwhile heat a large frying pan and lightly toast the pine nuts until fragrant then set them aside on a plate.
- Add the oil into the frying pan and using a pair of scissors cut the Parma ham into bite-size pieces. Sauté in the oil until the pieces begin to crispen.
- Chop the basil and quarter the cherry tomatoes.
- Drain the pasta and add to the frying pan along with the tomatoes, stir and warm through for a minute or so.
- Remove from the heat, stir in the rocket and basil.
- Serve immediately, topped with the goat’s cheese crumbled over.