I'm actually not sharing with you the salad that I learned from my parents just yet, but another risoni recipe that I came across at Christmas time 2010. I was flicking through the pages of my Donna Hay magazine issue 54 and spotted a different risoni salad, this one was a warm one but I actually served it cold on Christmas day. It was very nice and had a slight bite to it but the mint leaves just put the fire out if you had managed to get the odd chilli seed on your tongue.
I received rave reviews from all family members.....even Miss 9 gave it a shot (mind you she did pick out the best bits - the roasted pumpkin!) It's very easy to make and as I made it to have cold we are yet to try it hot. It's just one those salads that you could take to a family gathering that is a little different than the normal everyday salad that you see.
Donna Hay magazine issue 54 page 39 DEC/JAN 2011
750g butternut pumpkin, peeled and chopped
1 teaspoon each dried chilli flakes and fennel seeds
sea salt and cracked black pepper
1/4 cup (60ml) olive oil
200g warm cooked risoni
4 green onions (scallions), sliced
200g feta, crumbled
1/4 cup (40g) pine nuts, toasted
75g semidried tomatoes, chopped
1/2 cup each mint leaves and flat leaf parsley leaves - I gave mine a rough chop
2 tablespoons white balsamic or white wine vinegar
2 cloves garlic, crushed
Preheat oven to 200 degrees (400F). Place the pumpkin, chilli, fennel, salt and pepper and 1 tablespoon of oil on a baking tray and toss to combine.
Roast for 25 minutes or until pumpkin is tender. Place the warm pasta, pumpkin, onion, feta, pine nuts, tomatoes, mint and parsley in a bowl and mix to combine.
I ran my risoni under cold water after it was cooked so it didn't stick together as i was serving mine cold but if you wanted to serve it hot I would just leave it as you will be dressing it with the olive oil/balsamic and garlic.
Add the vinegar, remaining oil and garlic and toss to combine.