In this Mediterranean medley, pasta combines with artichoke hearts and olives in a light dressing of extra virgin olive oil and lemon.
Or is it an artichoke and olive salad with pasta? Either way, this main dish, which can be served hot or cold, is layered with flavor.
You can use leftover, unsauced pasta or cook the pasta for the occasion.
You can use bits of leftover proteins: beef, chicken, lamb, pork, seafood, soy-based, etc.
We adapted this recipe from one created by Lightlife, which used a package of its vegan Smart Strips Chick’n as the protein.
RECIPE: PASTA WITH ARTICHOKE HEARTS & OLIVES
Ingredients For 4 Servings
6 ounces cooked protein of choice
2 cups (8 ounces) uncooked pasta (yields 4 cups cooked pasta)
2 jars (6.5 ounces each) marinated artichoke hearts, drained
1/3 cup sliced Greek-style green and black olives
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons freshly-squeezed lemon juice
1 teaspoon freshly-grated lemon zest
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly cracked pepper
Garnish: freshly shredded Parmesan or other Italian grating cheese
Optional herbs: oregano, parsley, rosemary sage, thyme, tarragon (or julienned baby arugula or basil)
Serve with: breadsticks, foccacia or garlic bread
1. BOIL 4 to 6 quarts of water to a boil in a Dutch oven. Add the pasta, stir gently and return to a boil. Boil uncovered, stirring occasionally, for 9 minutes (for al dente pasta). Remove from the heat, drain well and place the pasta in a large mixing bowl. For a hot dish, cover to keep warm. If serving a warm dish…
2. WARM the proteins Otherwise, leave them chilled or at room temperature. Add them to the mixing bowl.
3. ADD the remaining ingredients except the cheese. You can mix the herbs into the pasta, or sprinkle them as a garnish. Mix the pasta well and plate; sprinkle with grated cheese and serve.
 Serve this pasta dish hot or cold (photo © Lightlife.com.
 Top the pasta dish with freshly-grated parmesan cheese.