Shrimp Pasta Salad with Buttermilk-Herb Dressing

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Cooking Light has delivered another great recipe. I made this last night and just finished it off for lunch today. It’s a cold pasta salad, so naturally, the leftovers are even better the next day and it makes for a great summer salad. Since I don’t eat meat, the shrimp works great for me, but I bet this would be fantastic with diced chicken as well. Here’s what you need:

8 oz. cooked pasta (I used baby shells, but any shape would do)
1 cup green peas (fresh or frozen)
1/2 lb. shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 cup thinly sliced radishes

For the dressing:

1/3 cup reduced-fat mayonnaise
1/4 cup buttermilk
3 Tbs. minced fresh chives
1 Tbs. chopped fresh dill
1/2 tsp. grated lemon rind
1 Tbs. fresh lemon juice
1/2 tsp. paprika
2 cloves garlic, minced
salt and pepper to taste

Cook the pasta according to package directions. While you are waiting for the water to come to a boil, whisk together the ingredients for the dressing. Remember, if you don’t have buttermilk (which I never do), just add a splash of lemon juice or vinegar to regular milk and let it sit for 5 minutes to make your own buttermilk. While your pasta is cooking, slice your radishes. I did this with a vegetable peeler and they came out great.

During the last 2 minutes of cooking time for your pasta, toss in your shrimp and peas. Bring the water back up to a boil and cook for an additional 2 minutes or so. Then, Drain everything together and rinse with cold water (making sure to drain it again). In a large bowl, Add your pasta shrimp to your sliced radishes and pour over your dressing. Mix it well to coat all of the pasta.

This can be served room temperature or chilled. I love that I can make this recipe the day before if we’re having company over and I can serve it directly from the fridge without having to reheat it. The less time that I can spend in the kitchen on the day of a cookout, the better!

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