With all that’s going on around us, I’ve been leaning a lot more into cooking. On a good day it’s my way of showing my family (who I’m in very close quarters with!) that I love them. But on a bad day, it’s also always been my escape. I find a lot of calmness in cooking, focusing on the task at hand, and embracing my creativity. This time of year, my cooking starts to lean into the change of seasons, and I love getting to see some of the first fresh spring ingredients appear –I was at a bridal shower a few weeks ago (before all of this social distancing started!) and the event had a delicious, spring-inspired menu. One dish was a beautiful green salad with big shaved slices of parmesan, and a grains salad that fulfilled my carb-needs. I mixed them both together on the plate and it made me think about how silly it is that we always separate green salads and pasta salads – why not mix them together?
That’s exactly where this recipe idea came from – it’s one part green salad, one part pasta salad, and full of beautiful textures, flavors and fresh Little Leaf Farms greens. What I love about it is that you can slide the scale one way or the other to make it a little bit more pasta-y or a little bit more salad-y. The recipe below has the ratio close to 50/50, so adjust it to your taste and make adaptations based on what’s in your pantry.  I’ve talked about my love for Little Leaf Farms before, and I’m so happy to partnering with them this year as a food brand that is really prioritizing sustainability in their business practices. It makes me feel good about the food I’m buying, and I love how delicious and fresh the greens are. For this recipe I used their Spring Mix for this recipe because, well Spring!, and because I love the peppery arugula taste mixed in with red and green leaf lettuce. Mixed in with the tasty Little Leaf Farms lettuce is a heap of bowtie pasta, which captures little bits of the ingredients in the pasta folds (rotini or gemelli would work well for this recipe too, use whatever pasta you have on hand). Roasted chickpeas and toasted pine nuts give the salad lots of texture and nutty depth, and the fresh English peas are a burst of spring brightness. I stocked up on chickpeas before we hunkered down at home, they’re a great pantry item to keep on hand and use for added protein in vegetarian dishes. Pine nuts are great staple too – you can keep them in your freezer to maintain their freshness. It all comes together with a simple lemon-garlic vinaigrette and topped with tons of shaved parmesan to finish it off! Yum! I ate this for lunch on its own after making it, but it would also work well as a side dish paired with some grilled fish or chicken once we enter summer barbeque season. If you plan to make it ahead, assemble all of the ingredients except for the Little Leaf Farms mixed greens and toss them in right before serving. Scroll down to get the full recipe!

Spring Bowtie Pasta and Greens Salad.
  • 15 oz Can of Chickpeas
  • ¼ Cup of Pine Nuts
  • ½ lb. of Farfalle pasta
  • ¼ Cup of Fresh English Peas
  • 1 Lemon, Juiced
  • 1 Clove of Garlic, finely minces
  • ¼ Cup of Olive Oil, plus more for drizzling
  • 1 Tbsp of Red Wine Vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp Parsley
  • ¼ Cup of Shaved Parmesan Cheese
  • 4 oz of Little Leaf Farms Greens
  • Salt and Pepper
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. On a rimmed baking sheet, arrange the chickpeas, drizzle lightly with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast for 20 minutes, during the last 2 minutes add the pine nuts to the pan to lightly toast them. Remove cooked chickpeas and toasted pine nuts from the oven and set aside to cool.
  2. While chickpeas are cooking, bring a pot of well-salted water to a boil and cook farfalle as directed. Add the English peas to the boiling water during the last 2-3 minutes of cooking. Drain and set aside.
  3. In a bowl whisk together lemon juice, olive oil, red wine vinegar, garlic and parsley.
  4. Add cooked pasta and peas, roasted chickpeas and pine nuts, shaved parmesan cheese and salad greens to a large bowl. Drizzle ingredients with the dressing and toss to combine, season with salt and pepper to taste.

Please note: This post was created in partnership with Little Leaf Farms. All opinions, images and content are my own. Thank you for supporting brands that support this site.