Cold pasta with cousin Moni

Here’s an easy, delicious and quick cold pasta recipe, perfect for big dinners, buffets and picnics (well, it’s turning Spring, isn’t it?)
I made it with a kilo of pasta, and it went some way to feeding around 10 people (depending on appetites, you can usually go by 100-150g of pasta per person.)


1kg penne rigate pasta (‘tubes’)
3 packs of mozzarella
3 packs of cherry tomatoes
1 bottle of pitted green or black olives (unseasoned)
1 clove of garlic
Basil, salt and olive oil to taste

1. Cut the mozzarella, tomatoes and olives and mix together in a bowl with olive oil and some salt.
2. Cut up fresh basil (if you have it) or add some dried basil to the mix. Cut the garlic in half and add that too.
3. Leave to marinade (preferably at least half an hour).
4. Cook the pasta – make sure it’s ‘al dente’, ie not over-cooked – keep tasting it as it nears the predicted cooking time (usually around 8-10 mins.)
5. Drain the pasta, and run under lots of cold water (it’s important it cools down, so the cheese doesn’t melt when you add the sauce.)
6. Add a little more oil and basil to the sauce and mix it together.
7. Remove the garlic (if you can find it! Or else warn everyone – garlic looks remarkably similar to mozzarella!)
7. Mix the pasta and sauce, and bob’s your uncle!

Moni and I are second cousins, but I feel like we’re very closely related. My great-grandparents were also second cousins.

Not meaning to flatter myself here, but I’m sorry Cousin Moni, I’m just not ready for that kind of relationship.

You do make a mean cold pasta though.