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Black-eyed Pea and Pasta Salad with Zesty Dressing

Zesty Dressing:
1/4 Cup olive oil
2 tablespoons vinegar (tarragon, malt or balsamic)
1 tablespoon dijon mustard
3/4 teaspoon minced garlic
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon finely grated orange zest
1 dash hot pepper sauce

Pasta Salad:
8 Ounces penne pasta (Sub: macaroni, rotelle, tortellini)
1 3/4 cups cooked blackeyed peas -- or more, rinsed
2/3 cup seeded and diced tomato
2/3 cup black or green olives (optional) -- sliced
2/3 cup chopped red bell pepper
2/3 cup green bell pepper
5 ounces diced jicama or water chestnuts
1/2 cup diagonally sliced green onions -- (length of pasta)
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro

Cook the pasta, al dente and rinse immediately under cold running water. Make the dressing in a blender or food processor. Toss with the pasta in a large serving bowl. Prepare the vegetables and add to the salad bowl. Toss. Cover and chill. Serve cold or at room temperature.

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