2017-08-23 / Entertainment

Kids and adults love Pizza Pasta Salad

By ANGELA SHELF MEDEARIS

This recipe for Pizza Pasta Salad with Chocolate Surprise Pudding for dessert is a great lunch (or dinner) for both children and adults. You can add any number of your favorite pizza ingredients to this salad. And it’s a great way to use up leftover cooked vegetables and meats, or those little packages of cheese and pepper flakes you may have on hand from your favorite pizza delivery service!

You also can “recycle” leftover pizza by reheating it for a few minutes and scraping the cheese and toppings from the crust. Mix them with the noodles, spices, Italian dressing and any other ingredients you may want to add (see instructions below). The crust can be toasted, cut into strips or cubes and served as croutons.

PIZZA PASTA SALAD
1 (16-ounce) bag plain or colored whole-wheat or regular
penne or spiral noodles, cooked
according to package directions
3/4 cup pepperoni cut into
wedges or mini-pepperoni slices
3/4 cup Monterey Jack or mozzarella cheese, cut into small
cubes
3/4 cup fresh tomatoes, diced
1/2 cup olives, sliced (optional)
1/2 cup roasted red bell peppers (in a jar), sliced
1/4 cup fresh Parmesan cheese
1 (16-ounce) bottle lite, zesty
Italian dressing

1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
1 teaspoon garlic salt
1 teaspoon ground black pepper 1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

Mix together the cooled, cooked pasta with all the other ingredients and place the salad in an airtight container with a tight fitting lid. Chill the pasta salad in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours before serving, stirring once per hour while chilling to distribute dressing into the pasta, and again before serving.

CHOCOLATE SURPRISE PUDDING

This nutritious pudding contains avocados, which add a power boost and creaminess to this simple, delicious dessert.

3 ripe bananas

2 large avocados, peeled and pitted

6 tablespoons unsweetened dark cocoa powder

3 tablespoons honey or agave syrup, to taste 1 teaspoon vanilla 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon Place bananas and avocados into a food processor or blender; blend until smooth and creamy. Add cocoa powder, honey or agave syrup, vanilla and cinnamon; blend until thoroughly combined and smooth. Divide into four single-serve cups with tight fitting lids. Refrigerate at least 2 hours before serving.

Angela Shelf Medearis is an award-winning children’s author, culinary historian and the author of seven cookbooks. Her new cookbook is “The Kitchen Diva’s Diabetic Cookbook.” ©2017 King Features Synd. and Angela Shelf Medearis

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