It might not technically be summer for a few more weeks, but lately it has felt like summer in Richmond. The festivities of Memorial Day weekend combined with the sweltering temperatures has made everything feel just a little more relaxed. Time seems to move more slowly as the mercury rises, and I plan my days around simultaneously soaking up the sun and keeping cool.

Yes, this sure does feel like summer.

I have been making nearly perfect pasta salads lately thanks to this fantastic article: Five Steps to Perfect Pasta Salad. I highly recommend that you read this before your next cookout or potluck meal.

Mediterranean Pasta and Veggie Salad


  • 1/2 lb pasta (I used Bombolini Pasta’s dill shells)
  • 1/2 lb broccoli, cut into florets
  • 1 cup grape tomatoes (I used miniature heirloom tomatoes)
  • 1 cup garbanzo beans
  • 1/2 large or 1 small cucumber, peeled and diced
  • 3 green onions, chopped
  • 4 Tbsp chopped black olives
  • 2 oz. crumbled feta
  • 2 tsp fresh basil, chopped
  • dressing of choice, to taste (I used TJ’s Greek feta dressing)


  1. Cook the pasta according to package directions, drain, and pour out onto a cookie sheet to cool.
  2. Steam the broccoli florets, drain, rinse with cold water, drain again and let sit to cool.
  3. Combine tomatoes, garbanzo beans, cucumber, onions, and olive in a large mixing bowl.
  4. When they are cooled, add the pasta and broccoli to the bowl and stir to combine.
  5. Add the olives, basil and feta only when the other ingredients are completely cooled, and stir to combine.
  6. Slowly add the dressing to the bowl, while tossing to coat the other ingredients. Serve at room temperature or refrigerate for a few hours and serve cold.

I served this with TJ’s falafel (so easy) and locally made tzatziki sauce. It was perfect for a warm evening on the porch.