Pesto Macaroni Salad

A layered salad with a zesty pesto dressing and cherry tomatoes, that also doubles as a hot pasta dish with a minute or two’s warming in a saucepan over a gas flame if you are in need of something warming on a picnic. Essentially it takes no time at all to prepare, but it is worth investing in a decent jar of pesto.

Reprinted from The Picnic Cookbook by Annie Bell. Copyright © 2013. Published by Kyle Books. Photos by Jonathan Bell.

Pesto Macaroni Salad

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    300 grams macaroni or penne 400-450 grams baby plum or mixed cherry tomatoes, halved
    7 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil 3 tablespoons pesto
    Sea salt and black pepper Coarsely chopped flat-leaf parsley


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    • 1

      Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil, add the macaroni, give it a stir and cook until just tender. Drain in a colander, briefly run under the cold tap to stop any further cooking, then toss with a tablespoon of oil in a bowl and leave to cool. At the same time, season the tomatoes with salt in another bowl and set aside for 15–30 minutes.

    • 2

      Whisk the pesto, remaining oil and a little seasoning in a large serving bowl. Scatter the tomatoes on top, drizzling over any juices given out, then scatter over the pasta and, finally, the parsley. Toss to serve when you’re ready to eat. Kit Serving spoon, plate, fork


    For 4–6 people, scale it down to 200g pasta, 350g tomatoes, 5 tablespoons of olive oil and 2 of pesto, respectively.

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