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Pasta salads...cool and stuffed.

Pasta salads . . . cool and stuffed

Cool and stylish, each of these summer entrees features saled in pasta containers.

Giant pasta shells cradle a creamy egg salad spiked with capers. Frilly-edged lasagna noodles, rolled into pinwheels, hold a radish-and-prosciutto mixture. For a leaner choice, you can fill egg roll wrappers with shrimp to serve on a pool of refreshingly tart tomatillo sauce.

The light meals can be assembled on individual plates several hours in advance.

Caper Egg Salad in Pasta Shells

Water

2 tablespoons salad oil

16 or 20 giant pasta shells

Caper egg salad (recipe follows)

Leat lettuce, washed and crisped

Celery leaves (optional)

Fill a large bowl with about 2 quarts cold water and add oil. In a 5- to 6-quart pan, bring about 3 quarts water to boiling. Add pasta shells and boil on high heat, uncovered, until barely tender to bite, about 10 minutes. When pasta is done, lift out shells with a slotted spoon and transfer to the cold water. When cool, drain.

Fill each shell with caper egg salad. On each of 4 dinner plates, place 1 or 2 lettuce leaves. Set 4 or 5 shells on each plate. Garnish with celery leaves, if you like. (If made ahead, cover and chill up to 4 hours.) Makes 4 servings.

Caper egg salad. In a bowl, mix 1/3 cup sour cream with 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard, 2 tablespoons drained capers, 3/4 cup thinly sliced celery, and 3 tablespoons thinly sliced green onions. Peel 6 hard-cooked large eggs, coarsely chop, and stir into sour cream mixture; add salt and pepper to taste.

Lasagna Wheels with Radish Salad

Water

2 tablespoons salad oil

12 lasagna noodles, each about 1 1/2 inches wide and 10 inches long

Radish salad (recipe follows)

Large watercress sprigs, washed and crisped

4 or 6 radishes, rinsed and drained

Fill a large bowl with about 2 quarts cold water and add oil. In a 5- to 6-quart pan, bring about 3 quarts water to boiling. Add noodles and boil on high heat, uncovered, until barely tender to bite, about 10 minutes; drain. Immerse noodles in cold water to cool. Drain well.

Lay noodles flat; spread each with about 1/4 cup of radish salad filling. Starting at a narrow end, roll each into a pinwheel. On each of 4 or 6 dinner plates, arrange 6 to 8 watercress sprigs. Set 2 or 3 lasagna wheels, edges up, on each plate; garnish with a radish. (If made ahead, cover and chill up to 4 hours.) Serves 4 or 6.

Radish salad. Beat together until creamy 1 1/2 cups (11 to 12 oz.) cream cheese (at room temperature), 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar, and 1 1/2 teaspoons minced fresh tarragon or 1/2 teaspoon dry tarragon. Mix in 6 ounces thinly sliced prosciutto or pastrami, cut into thin slivers (about 1 cup); 1 1/4 cups packed, washed, and shredded watercress sprigs; 3/4 cup chopped radishes; and 1/3 cup thinly sliced chives. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Shrimp Packets with Tomatillo Puree

1 pound small cooked and shelled shrimp

1 can (6 oz.) water chestnuts, drained and chopped

2 tablespoons minced fresh cilantro (coriander)

6 egg roll wrappers, each about 6 inches square

1 large egg white

Water

2 tablespoons salad oil

Tomatillo sauce (recipe follows)

6 small ripe tomatoes, cored and cut into 1/2-inch cubes

Fresh cilantro sprigs

Mix shrimp, water chestnuts, and cilantro. For each packet, place 1/4 cup of the shrimp filling in the center of 1 egg roll wrapper. Brush edges of wrapper with egg white, then bring opposite corners together. Press edges of packet to seal securely. In a 5- to 6-quart pan, bring about 3 quarts water with oil to boiling. Add 2 of the shrimp packets at a time and cook on high heat, uncovered, just until pasta is barely tender to bite, about 3 minutes. Using a slotted spatula or spoon, carefully lift out 1 packet at a time and place in a large bowl of ice water. When cool, life out and drain well on paper towels.

On each of 6 dinner plates, ladle about 1/6 of the tomatillo sauce; set 1 shrimp packet in sauce on a plate. (If made ahead, cover and chill up to 4 hours.) Spoon about 1/6 of the remaining shrimp mixture and the diced tomatoes over each packet. Garnish with cilantro sprigs. Makes 6 servings.

Tomatillo sauce. Remove and discard hulls from 24 large tomatillos (about 4 cups); wash fruit. In a 2- to 3-quart pan, combine tomatillos and about 2 cups water; bring to boiling, then cover and simmer until tomatillos are tender to pierce, about 10 minutes; drain. (Or use 2 cans-- 12 oz. each--tomatillos, drained.)

In a blender, combine tomatillos; 1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro; 6 green onions, ends trimmed and chopped; 1 large can (7 oz.) and 1 small can (4 oz.) diced green chilies, drained. Whirl until pureed. Add salt to taste. Let cool. If made ahead, cover and chill up to 4 hours; if sauce is too thick to flow freely, thin with 2 to 4 tablespoons water.

Photo: Lasagna wheels Roll cold cooked lasagna noodle, spread with creamcheese mixture, into pinwheel. Filling is chunky with chopped radishes, nippy watercress, and prosciutto slivers. Set pasta on edge; serve with watercress sprigs and a crisp fresh radish

Photo: Egg in pasta shells Gently pinch cold cooked pasta shall to open up its cupped shape. Stuff generously with creamy chopped egg salad spiked with piquant capers and crisp bits of chopped celery. Serve filled pasta on curly lettuce leaves; garnish with sprigs of celery

Photo: Shrimp packets Fill egg roll wrappers with shrimp salad; press edges to seal, then boil gently until tender. Let packets cool. Serve with tomatillo sauce; top with more shrimp and tomatoes
COPYRIGHT 1986 Sunset Publishing Corp.
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1986 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:recipes
Publication:Sunset
Date:Jun 1, 1986
Words:982
Previous Article:Cool enough for ferns and people...in Modesto.
Next Article:June menus: skewered satay and salad supper, quesadilla and salsa breakfast, shrimp and pasta picnic.
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