Fresh basil and tomato pasta salad

10 ounces pasta – whole wheat or not

5 tablespoons red wine vinegar

5 tablespoons olive oil

1 clove garlic, minced

salt and pepper

1 tablespoon tomato paste

1/4 cup shredded parmesan cheese

1 cup chopped fresh basil

2 cups fresh or frozen corn

1 cup sliced cherry tomatoes

Cook pasta until al dente. Drain and rinse the pasta under cold water.

Place the pasta, tomatoes, corn, and fresh basil in a large bowl.

Mix the olive oil, minced garlic, red wine vinegar, tomato paste, salt and pepper. Once this is fully mixed, add the parmesan. Allow it to sit for 15-45 minutes before dressing the salad.

Broccoli and bacon pasta salad

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6 slices bacon – sliced small and cooked

2 cups broccoli – cleaned and trimmed small

1/2 cup cheddar cheese

4 green onions – cleaned and sliced thin

2 teaspoons dry yellow mustard

1/2 teaspoon black pepper

1 teaspoon salt

1 cup mayonnaise

1/4 cup champagne vinaigrette or similar

8 ounces elbow macaroni

 

Cook the macaroni according to package directions. Drain and rinse the pasta fully with cold water.

Slice the bacon into small pieces. Cook in skillet until crisp. Drain well.

Prepare the dressing by mixing the mayonnaise, vinaigrette, salt, pepper, and dry mustard.

In a large bowl, combine the green onions, cheese, raw broccoli, bacon, and cold pasta. Toss with dressing until fully coated. Allow salad to sit in refrigerator at least 1-3 hours before eating. Add additional dressing if salad becomes dry while waiting.

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Bacon pasta salad

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My mom used to make a 7 layer salad with this type of dressing. The sugar salt mayo combination turns into a sweet creamy flavor explosion. I am so happy that I found a way to combine it with pasta and not just lettuce.

 

2 cups elbow macaroni cooked al dente

6 pieces bacon cooked and crumbled

1/8 cup diced chives

1/4 cup diced red bell pepper

1/4 cup diced celery

1 cup mayonnaise

1/2 cup plain greek yogurt

1 teaspoon sugar

3 teaspoons white vinegar

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon black pepper

 

Mix all of the pasta and vegetables together. Mix together mayo, yogurt, sugar, vinegar, salt, and pepper. Mix all together. Refrigerate for at least 3 hours before serving. Trust me the flavor will be bitter and not good inmediately. It will improve.

To reserve later, just add 1-3 tablespoons of milk and mix.

 

Granny’s crunchy pea salad

My Granny passed a few years ago. She could cook like no one else. Holidays were full of her famous dishes and this was one. My oldest daughter had a tea party at school. They painted tea pots and practiced tea service for months for thei. When asked to bring a dish, it was fitting that I bring Granny’s crunchy pea salad. Who knows where Granny found this recipe. It was likely in the Sunday paper way back in 1950. We never asked. It was always in a crystal bowl waiting for us every holiday for 38 years.

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1 head of cauliflower – cut small no stems

1/2 cup green onion, chopped

1 packaged of frozed green peas, thawed

1/2 pound bacon, cooked and small chopped

2 cups shell pasta, cooked al dente and rinsed in cold water

1 cup cashews

2 stems celery, fine chopped

1 cup ranch salad dressing

1/2 cup sour cream

salt and pepper to taste

1 teaspoon dill

Mix all except bacon and cashews. Refrigerate overnight. The next day, mix and add salt and pepper as needed. If dry, add a little more ranch (2 tablespoons) mixed 1:1 with milk. Add cashews and bacon. Serve immediately.

 

I made my own ranch dressing which I do not think she did. It was fabulous. Everyone was pleased!