Pumpkin yoghurt pasta salad

I’m always looking for some filling, fresh and yummy accompaniments to a meaty summer BBQ. A side that can stand alone and isn’t just the obligatory greenery on the plate that justifies the three sausages next to it.

Pumpkin is my new favourite vegetable – so versatile, colourful and flavoursome. So I wanted to come up with a BBQ side that would utilise pumpkin in all its glory. A pasta salad was an obvious choice!

This light and summary pasta salad is the perfect addition to a summer BBQ.


Ingredients:
  • 500g pasta
  • 1/2 pumpkin – half diced and half boiled
  • ½ cup vegetable stock
  • 2 cloves garlic diced
  • 1 tablespoon oregano
  • Salt and pepper
  • 3 tablespoon yoghurt
  • 1 zucchini
  • 6 mushrooms diced
  • 4 rashes of bacon
  • Punnet of cherry tomatoes
  • ¼ cup parsley
  • ¼ cup basil
  • ¼ cup of olive oil
  • 100g ricotta
  • Tablespoon of lemon juice
Method:
  • Put half the pumpkin in the oven at 250 degrees and roast for 30minutes or until cooked
  • Boil half the pumpkin and once soft, mash until smooth
  • Cook garlic until it softens
  • Add the pumpkin puree (you should have approximately 1 cup), vegetable stock, oregano and salt and pepper and cook on low for 15minutes or until it thickens
  • Cook the pasta
  • In the meantime, thinly slice the zucchini and cook with olive oil, salt and pepper until soft
  • Dice the mushrooms and cook until they darken
  • Cook the bacon until crispy and cut into 1cm pieces
  • Once the pumpkin sauce thickens, remove from heat and quickly mix in the yoghurt
  • Once pasta is cooked, drain and add the pumpkin sauce, roasted pumpkin, zucchini, mushrooms, cherry tomatoes and olive oil (I used herb infused), parsley, basil and bacon.
  • Mix the ricotta and lemon juice together and add to pasta salad
  • Enjoy!
This recipe actually makes an amazing cold pasta salad or simple weeknight meal, served warm. For a vegetarian alternative just remove the bacon and consider adding some olives for some salt.

Fun farewell yoghurt fact:
Yoghurt bacteria can relieve the symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome.”

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