This is the most simple pasta salad ever but sometimes with family food, simple is best. These fun tri-colour pasta shapes are coloured with vegetables and are easily found. Any pasta will do though – gluten-free, paleo or wholemeal.
Even if you have a tiny patch of garden or only a pot you will be able to grow some calendula or borage. Once you have it, it pops up year after year in the craziest places. Nasturtiums and onion weed grow wild all over New Zealand (please reference my edible flowers blog on theveggietree.com so you can be sure of what you are gathering). You can also buy edible flowers in some stores and markets.
Gather your ingredients and put a large pan of water on to boil. Prepare then set aside the following ingredients:
1 x 400g can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
4-5 tomatoes, sliced into bite-sized pieces, or 1 c cherry tomatoes, halved
½ c edible flowers and/or fresh herbs such as chives, basil, dill or parsley
¼c extra virgin olive oil
Once the water has come to the boil add:
1 tsp salt
300g dried pasta shapes of choice
Cook the pasta as per instructions until just cooked, then empty into a colander in the sink. Transfer the cooked pasta into a bowl and add the prepared ingredients along with:
1 tsp flaked sea salt
¼ tsp cracked black pepper
Toss together well and top with a few extra petals.
To add green beans to the salad, first top and tail them and cut them into 5mm slices. Add to the pasta boiling water one minute before the pasta is cooked. Drain the beans along with the pasta.
You could also add feta cheese (make your own dairy-free feta), any leftover grilled or roasted vegetables, pesto, sliced beans or snow peas, avocado chunks, olives or sprouted pulses.