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A friend gave me a large amount of tiny tomatoes from her garden. I indulged right out of the bag while they were still warm from the sun – a wonderful, fresh burst of the summer season.
I was glad to have enough left to make this light pasta salad, it looked so appealing I was eager to try it.


salt and pepper
10 ounces penne pasta
1/2 cup lightly packed whole fresh basil leaves, plus 1/4 cup sliced basil leaves
1/3 cup fat-free plain Greek yogurt
1/4 cup light mayonnaise
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 small clove of garlic
2 cups grape tomatoes, halved lengthwise
1 orange bell pepper, cut into 1/4 inch pieces
1/3 cup halved pimiento stuffed green olives

In a large pot of boiling, salted water, cook the pasta according to package directions. Drain, then rinse under cold water. Transfer the pasta to a serving bowl. While the pasta is cooking, in a food processor, puree the whole basil leaves, yogurt, mayonnaise, cheese, olive oil, lemon juice and garlic, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Pour the mixture over the pasta and toss well to coat. Stir in the tomatoes, bell pepper, olives and sliced basil. Season with salt and pepper and toss gently.

Recipe adapted from Rachael Ray, July/August 2013