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Pasta Salad “Verde”



4 cups of cauliflower florets
1/3 cup of good extra virgin olive oil
Salt and freshly ground pepper
2 cups of Castelvetrano olives, pitted and sliced
2 cups of cucumber, cut into small dice
1 cup of fresh flat leaf parsley, chopped
1 1/2 cups of green onion, sliced
3 tbsp. of lemon thyme, chopped
2 cups of Feta cheese, crumbled
1/3 cup of preserved lemon peel, chopped
1 cup of Parmesan cheese, grated
1 lb. of cooked pasta, chilled, any shape


2 tbsp. of lemon zest
1/2 cup of fresh lemon juice
2 tsp. of salt
1 tsp. of freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 cups of good extra virgin olive oil


  1. Begin Salad:
    Preheat your oven to 450 °F. Place the cauliflower florets into a large bowl and toss with the olive oil and the salt and pepper. Place the florets onto a sheet pan covered in foil. Spread out the florets so they have some space between them- this encourages browning while they roast. Roast the cauliflower for about 8 minutes, then remove from the oven. Stir them around to turn them over and roast for another 5 or 6 minutes or until they are nicely browned and tender. Remove from oven and set aside.
  2. Make Vinaigrette:
    Whisk the lemon zest, juice, salt and pepper together with the olive oil. Keep whisking until the vinaigrette has thickened slightly. Set aside.
  3. Put Salad Together:
    Place the remaining salad ingredients into a large bowl and toss them together with about half of the vinaigrette. Taste the salad and add more vinaigrette if needed. Makes about 10-12 servings of salad. Extra vinaigrette keeps for about a week when refrigerated.
Cook's Note: This is a nice salad to bring to a party. It can also be made a day ahead. If made ahead of time, keep the dressing separate- then and add it and toss the salad just before serving. If cucumber is not available, celery is a great substitute.


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