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posted: 9/12/2013 6:00 AM

Prosciutto and melon pairing inspire a pasta salad

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  • Pasta salad should be easy. It should be a just-throw-the-ingredients-in-a-bowl kind of summer food like this prosciutto, cantaloupe and orecchiette combo.

      Pasta salad should be easy. It should be a just-throw-the-ingredients-in-a-bowl kind of summer food like this prosciutto, cantaloupe and orecchiette combo.
    Associated Press

  • Pasta salad should be easy. It should be a just-throw-the-ingredients-in-a-bowl kind of summer food like this prosciutto, cantaloupe and orecchiette combo.

      Pasta salad should be easy. It should be a just-throw-the-ingredients-in-a-bowl kind of summer food like this prosciutto, cantaloupe and orecchiette combo.
    Associated Press

 
By Alison Ladman
Associated Press

A pasta salad should be easy. It should be a just-throw-the-ingredients-in-a-bowl kind of summer food that doesn't require too much messing around.

With that in mind, we designed this salad to be just that. We do a quick boil of the pasta, and we throw in the veggies to blanch during the last 2 minutes. This simple trick saves you a pot to wash and an extra step.

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Then we add some flavor in the way of salty prosciutto and sweet melon, and you've got a classic Italian pairing turned into summer side dish. Of course, because it's pasta salad, the combinations really are limitless. You can substitute any shape pasta you prefer. Switch out the prosciutto for bacon or salami, green beans for the asparagus, peaches for the cantaloupe. The great thing about pasta salad is that it's so easy to make it yours.

• Alison Ladman is a recipe developer for The Associated Press. Follow her on Twitter @CrustAndCrumbCo

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