Thursday, May 10, 2012

Pasta Salad

Just a reminder that my siblings are riding 37 miles for diabetes in the Tour de Cure.  If you donate, I'll bake you cookies.  See details here. 

Summer's coming and I'm on the lookout for some different salads to try.  I'll be featuring salad recipes throughout May so check back to get some new ideas.  Or at the very least get a new recipe for a classic summer staple, like today's recipe. 

Up first is my Gram's pasta salad recipe.  It's easy, colorful and full of veggies.  If you want to keep it vegetarian, it's still great even without the pepperoni.  This pasta salad tastes best if it's made at least a few hours before serving.  I try to make it the day before if I can.  And I love to eat it for lunch with leftover grilled chicken.

What are some of your favorite salads?

Pasta Salad
Adapted from Gram Valentine
Yield: a ton!

1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
1/2 cup red onion (about 1/2 of a small red onion)  I don't like raw onion so I don't add much, feel free to bump it up
2 (15 oz) cans black olives, sliced
1 red pepper, chopped
1 green pepper, chopped
3 oz pepperoni slices, quartered
8 oz NY sharp cheddar, cubed
1 box (12 oz) tri-color pasta
1/2 cup Italian dressing, plus about 1/4 cup more when you serve it

In a large pot bring water to boil, salt it (the water should taste salty like the sea), and add the pasta.  Cook to al dente (2-3 minutes less than the package specifies).  Strain the pasta and run cold water over it until it cools (to stop the cooking process).

Dump all the ingredients except that last 1/4 cup of dressing into the largest container you have and mix until evenly distributed.

Before serving add the 1/4 cup of dressing to the salad and mix.

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  1. Looks great! Love (well-saturated) pasta salad. It's fun to put a lot of variety in it.

  2. That's a classic! I like to add fresh parsley.

    I just found one made with ravioli that I want to try.

  3. Looks great! I just put a rice salad on my blog - it's that time of year for awesome salads! I will say that your pic of the plate with the salad, aspargus and hotdog made me laugh. I would need a side plate for my portion size for that pasta salad! (I eat way too much!!) Thanks for sharing!

  4. OMG -- I've made this for years! I got the recipe from my Mother-In-Law and I always look forward to it for summer. We sprinkle grated Parmesan cheese on top, too. Love this salad!!