The bow-ties make it cute; the tomatoes and herbs make it garden-fresh.
Hubby almost couldn't find the bow-tie pasta when I sent him to the grocery to purchase some of the ingredients. Finally he discovered it under the label "farfalle", its formal name.
"Mediterranean," was all he could say after the resulting Herbed Pasta and Chicken Salad was prepared and served. Truly the recipe had many the elements (olive oil, herbs, etc.) of the Mediterrean cuisine that many are telling us is health-inducing and life-prolonging.
But the fresh tomatoes absolutely made the salad. I kept looking out the back door and longed for the day when our fall tomato plans are thriving and when all tomatoes that are called for in a recipe can be the fruit of our garden's handiwork.
Allowing this dish to chill in the refrigerator for at least 8 hours or overnight is mandatory. The mixture would have seemed rather insipid if it had not been for the lengthy melding of the flavors. Allow plenty of time; don't get in a hurry (the Mediterranean way, of course). You'll have the salad around forever, so don't rush things here--just as if you were enjoying the more-relaxed pace of the Old Country.
We did. It's still filling up our lunchtime plates after we enjoyed it for dinner one evening.
Herbed Pasta and Chicken Salad
4 ounces bow-tie pasta
1 cup chopped cooked white chicken meat
2 cups small cherry tomatoes, halved (or 4 regular-sized Roma tomatoes, cut into small chunks)
1/2 cup chopped celery
1/4 cup chopped black olives
2 ounces diced cheddar cheese
2/3 cup white wine vinegar
1/4 cup fresh basil
1/4 cup fresh parsley
4 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons chopped fresh oregano
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground pepper
Cook pasta according to directions, omitting salt Drin, rinse in cold water, and rinse again. Combine pasta, tomatoes, celery, olives , and cheeses in a large bowl. Set Aside. Combine vinegar and remaining ingredients, stirring with a wire whisk. Pour over pasta and toss gently. Cover tightly and chill in at bowl at least 8 hours. Yield: about 7 cups.