Mediterranean Pasta Salad with Olive Oil Vinaigrette

By: Ify Yani

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Food Styling and Photography Tips from Expert, Ify Yani 

It’s wonderful to know that Barilla pasta is made with the highest quality natural ingredients and their variety of pasta shapes enable you to let your creativity flourish. It’s also a sign of love to prepare high quality pasta for yourself or the special people in your life.

This pasta salad recipe is inspired by the Mediterranean diet, which is a way of eating and preparing dishes inspired by the traditional dietary patterns of the Mediterranean region. It incorporates a variety of quality food groups that can be eaten often in reasonable amounts, including pasta.

This pasta salad recipe illustrates how simple and healthy ingredients can be combined to make something beautiful. Ify is a food stylist and photographer, and she strives to keep things simple when it comes to creating a scene. Here are some of her best tips to get started with food styling. 

Tip #1: Tell A Story
“I see food styling as a form of storytelling, therefore, having a few extra ingredients you can use to style your scene gives more life to the image. It can be as simple as having fresh herbs and spices placed around the main subject or some cheese partly grated in the background. These elements tell the viewer what the scene is about and draws their focus. Even adding a human element to your scene goes a long way too.

Tip #2: Use a source of natural light
Playing with natural light in food photography will help highlight a sense in a spectacular way. The use of natural light will allow for depths in shadows and softness in highlights. I find that this type of lighting brings realism to your dish and allows it to be showcased authentically.

Tip #3: Add textures and layers
As you set up your scene think about different textures and layers you can include. Fabrics, and props make a big difference and add so much more to your storytelling. Placing fabrics or linen under a plate or bowl adds more texture to the scene. 

Tip #4: Try different angles
Depending on what you intend to style and photograph, it's a good idea to get several different angles for each shot. It makes your images more dynamic and allows the hero dish to be seen from a variety of angles and also give you more options to choose from.”

 

 

Ingredients 3 Number of Servings

3 cups Barilla Rotini or Fusilli
1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
¼ cup cucumbers, halved or diced
¼ cup red onions, thinly sliced
½ cup feta, crumbled
½ cup Kalamata or green olives, pitted
1 ½ cups baby spinach

Salad Dressing 
1 ½ tbsp red wine vinegar
2 tbsp fresh or dried oregano
½ tsp onion powder
½ tsp garlic powder
1 tsp black pepper
1 tsp salt
½ cup olive oil
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Instructions

  • Cook pasta to al dente according to package directions.
  • As pasta cooks, prep salad ingredients; cut cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, red onions, crumble feta. You can use the leave the pitted kalamata olives whole or cut in half. Set aside.

  • Once pasta is cooked, drain and set aside to cool.
  • Place the olive oil, red wine vinegar, oregano, onion powder, garlic powder salt and black pepper in a jar with a lid. Cover the jar with it’s lid and shake vigorously to mix.
  • Transfer the salad ingredients to a large serving bowl and add spinach.
  • Drizzle dressing over the top, toss and serve.
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