Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Pasta Salad

I love to make pasta salads! Honestly, anything goes when you make one of these. I look into the fridge, cabinets and garden and see what can be used.

For the salad in the photo (bad photo, I know), I used:

1 pound of cooked spiral pasta, drained and rinsed with cold water
1 small can of sliced mushrooms,drained
1 small can of sliced black olives, drained
1 small jar of marinated artichokes (add the juice too)
1 small jar of baby pickled corn, cut into small pieces
2-3 stalks of celery, chopped
grape tomatoes, halved
chopped baby carrots
1 thinly sliced English cucumber
1 bottle Balsamic Vinaigrette dressing

Just mix all the ingredients together and refrigerate. It's best to make this a few hours in advance to let the flavors mingle.

This is just one of the many pasta salads I've made. What dictates the final result is what is available. Some other things that could be added:

sliced green onions
diced green, red, yellow or purple sweet peppers
diced yellow squash or zucchini
cooked kidney beans, drained and rinsed
chopped cooked chicken
pine nuts
sunflower seeds
Italian herbs
cubed cheese
bacon or ham

The possibilities are endless. You can use different kinds of pasta and dressing too. One of the family favorites uses elbow macaroni, celery, diced cucumbers, diced tomatoes, celery seed and a dressing of half ranch dressing and half Italian dressing.

Do you make pasta salad? Care to share your recipe?


Anonymous said...

I had the pleasure of tasting this pasta salad and it was delicious!

Country Whispers said...

I love pasta salad but I do the same thing as you. I use whatever I have on hand so it's never the same.

Granny Sue said...

I think that's the beauty of pasta salad! It's never the same. My mother used to make pretty much the same salad--elbow macaroni, celery seed, chopped celery and mayonnaise. It was good, but I like the variations on the theme.

Amy, I'm glad you liked it! My favorite ingredient is the marinated artichokes. When I was about 20 years old, probably pregnant with someone, my ex and I went to a company event. It was a dinner theatre and one of the things they served was marinated artichokes. I loved them!

For years I remembered that taste but couldn't afford to buy them. Now the price is lower and I have more money than I did back then, so I can buy them occasionally. Bliss!

Laura said...

We make a pasta salad with bow-tie pasta, baby spinach, almonds (I think blanched, but about any type would do) and creamy poppy seed dressing. Boil and drain the pasta, then toss in the rest of the ingredients. I like to add sunflower kernals as well.

Tony said...

Thanks for the first comment on my new personal blog. I'm going to try to get some interesting posts up soon. I hope to add som more the Raconteur blog to once people give me info to post.

Granny Sue said...

Laura, that sounds delicious. Poppy seed dressing is one of my favorites, and the combination of ingredients sounds intriguing. I'll give it a try.

Keep up the good work, Tony. I hope the group continues to do well.

Cathy said...

I am the same about tossing in whatever is on hand. It never gets boring when you never know what you are going to get exactly!

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