Three Cheese Pasta Salad

This is a great dish to bring to a luncheon, BBQ or potluck dinner. Just whip it up the night before and it’s ready to go the next day!

8 ounces medium size pasta shells
1 cup pitted Kalamata black olives, sliced
1/3 cup red bell pepper, chopped
1/3 cup yellow bell pepper, chopped
1/3 cup orange bell pepper, chopped
1 cup Feta cheese, crumbled
1/2 cup sharp white cheddar cheese, diced into 1/4 inch cubes
1/2 cup Gouda cheese, diced into 1/4 inch cubes
6 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar (substitute red wine vinegar, if preferred)
3/4 cup olive oil
1 clove of garlic, minced
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1/4 teaspoon sugar

Cook pasta in pot of boiling water until tender but still firm. Don’t overcook the pasta! It still has to marinate overnight and will become soggy if overcooked. Drain the pasta in a colander. Rinse with cold water and drain again.

Mix pasta, olives, bell peppers, Feta, cheddar, Gouda and basil in large bowl to combine. In a small bowl, whisk balsamic vinegar and olive oil together until well combined. Whisk in garlic, salt, pepper and sugar. Toss the salad with the dressing to coat. Cover and refrigerate until well chilled, at least 2 hours.

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