Serves: 4 to 6
1 lb. penne pasta – cooked al dente in salted water (Tony uses DaVinci pasta)
1 cup basil pesto – see Tony’s recipe below
1 cup or 1 large tomato, medium diced (you may also use grape tomatoes, cut in half)
½ cup chopped Kalamata olives, pitted
¼ cup toasted pine nuts
2 Tablespoons red wine vinegar
Salt and pepper to taste
Cook the pasta in boiling, salted water until al dente (according to package instructions). Drain in a colander and transfer the pasta immediately to a bowl of ice water for about a minute to stop the cooking process. This will ensure that your pasta remains al dente. Drain and transfer pasta to a serving bowl. Stir in one tablespoon of vegetable oil to prevent sticking.
Mix the chilled pasta with the basil pesto until evenly coated. Add olives, pine nuts tomatoes and red wine vinegar and toss until well mixed. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight if possible.
To store: Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for up to 3 to 4 days. Great dish to prepare in advance.