Mozzarella Pasta Salad

Ingredients

For the pasta:

  • 8 ounces bowtie pasta
  • salt, to taste
  • 3 cups spinach, roughly chopped
  • 1 pint grape tomatoes, halved
  • 8 ounces mozzarella, diced

For the parmesan balsamic vinaigrette:

  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons parmesan, grated
  • 1/2 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • freshly cracked pepper, to taste

Directions

  1. Fill a large pot with water and add the salt. Bring the water to a boil over high heat.
  2. Add the bowtie pasta and continue to boil until the pasta is tender, according to the package directions.
  3. Drain the pasta in a colander and rinse under cool water. Set it aside while preparing the rest of the salad.
  4. Add the spinach, the tomatoes, and the mozzarella to a large bowl.
  5. Add the pasta to the bowl with the mozzarella and the vegetables. Ensure it is mostly cooled so as not to melt the cheese or wilt the spinach.
  6. Prepare the salad dressing by blending the olive oil, the balsamic vinegar, the mayonnaise, the parmesan, the Dijon mustard, the garlic, the basil, the salt, and the cracked pepper until combined.
  7. Pour the salad dressing over the bowl with the pasta, the cheese, and the vegetables and toss to coat.
  8. Serve immediately or store in the refrigerator.

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