***PLEASE NOTE*** The name,”The Food Fairy,” is federally trademarked by North Carolina personal chef Terri McClernon. For more information about her business and services, please visit her site here.
Today, I’m on KUOW talking about how preparing great food ahead of time makes me feel like there’s a food fairy in the fridge. It works like this: I get hungry, I open the door, and boom – there she is, all twinkles and glitter, handing me the perfect mayo-less pasta salad.
Unlike more typical pasta salads, in this one, it’s the vegetables (and a good hit of vinegar) that shine. Crisp corn, juicy cherry tomatoes, and summer’s best green beans compete for attention in each bite. Instead of the usual dairy component, the salad gets its creaminess from white beans—which means it’s also packed with protein.
Oh, how I love the food fairy.
If you listened in, here are the other make-ahead recipes I mentioned:
Bean and Bright Vegetable Salad (PDF)
TIME: 20 minutes active time
MAKES: 4 to 6 servings
1 cup orzo or other small pasta
1/4 pound thin green beans, trimmed and chopped into 1/2” pieces
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons finely chopped shallot
1/4 cup champagne wine vinegar
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
Salt and freshly ground pepper
Kernels from 1 large ear corn
1 (15-ounce) can white or Great Northern beans, drained, or 1 cup dried beans, soaked and cooked
2 cups baby tomatoes, halved or quartered
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh parsley
Cook the orzo for 7 minutes in a large pot of boiling, salted water. Add the green beans, cook 2 more minutes, and drain them both together.
Meanwhile, whisk the mustard, shallot, vinegar, olive oil, and a bit of salt and pepper together in a large mixing bowl. Add the hot pasta and beans as soon as they’ve been drained, then stir in the corn and beans. Let cool to room temperature, stirring occasionally, then fold in the tomatoes and parsley. Season to taste with salt and pepper, and serve. (Salad can be kept in the refrigerator, covered, up to 5 days.)