This is a fabulous summer salad and was so popular with the cafe customers. It is clean, fresh, and keeps for up to a week in the refrigerator. It's the perfect dish to take to a cookout, too. Substitute quinoa, corn or rice pasta if you want to eliminate the gluten!
6 ounces farfalle (bow-tie) pasta
6 ounces cavatappi or other spiral pasta
6 Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
6 Tablespoons red wine vinegar
2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves, finely chopped
Salt and Pepper to taste
2 medium carrots, halved and sliced 1/2" thick
2 stalks celery, with leaves, cut into 1/2 " dice
1 cup red onion, 1/2 " dice
2 medium red bell peppers, seeded and cut into 1/2" dice (see video)
Fill a large pot with water and bring to a boil. Add 1-2 Tablespoons salt, until it tastes slightly salty (like sea water). Cook pastas by placing the longest cooking pasta in first and bringing to a boil. Cook until the time left is the required time for the remaining pasta to cook and add it to the pot. Cook until both are just done. (The farfalle I use requires 15 minutes to cook, and the cavatappi requires 9 minutes. I started the farfalle, cooked it for 6 minutes, then added the cavatappi and finished cooking both for 9 minutes. This eliminates having to do it in two batches!)
Drain the pasta well in a colander and dump it out onto a sheet pan. Drizzle with 1 Tablespoon of the olive oil and toss until it is all coated. Sprinkle with a little salt and pepper. Let cool on the counter briefly, then refrigerate or place in the freezer until it is completely cold.
Meanwhile, whisk together the remaining 5 Tablespoons of olive oil, red wine vinegar and thyme in a very large bowl. Add a large pinch of salt and pepper. Add the vegetables and stir to coat. Add the pasta and combine well. Adjust salt and pepper to suit your taste.
Refrigerate for at least an hour before serving to allow flavors to develop.