Cold Penne Salad



This is the Cold Penne Salad from RFD's book (otherwise known in the restaurant as "Penne for Your Thoughts", I guess (says the book, so it must be so). It's phenomenal. While I was making it, I was really second guessing it. It seemed like such a loony mix of stuff. There's cooked onion, broccoli, green pepper, garlic... then chopped kalamata olives, re-hydrated sun dried tomatoes, penne, balsamic vinagrette-marinated grilled portabello and... pesto sauce (with miso!). Yet, because Ann Gentry has come up with things far more over the moon than I ever have, I followed the recipe to the letter and it payed off (whew!). It was fantastic! Oh, there's pine nuts too, which I'm convinced elevate a lot of salad, pasta and rice dishes to heights that they'd never otherwise achieve. It's also served room temp, which worked out great for my new job which doesn't have a fridge or micro (a vegan lunchtime challenge!) But, this works. It did take a long time to cook, though (a sauce, a marinade, grilling, cooking, etc)- but, as the RFD book has taught me, really amazing food usually takes time.