I'm still in slow motion, so I knew if I made pasta salad this afternoon, we could eat it for the next few days. It just gets better and better. Usually I am making this by the gallon for the work camp our church hosts every summer. I've made it many times, but this may be the first time I've made a single recipe just for us. And because this is the very nicest weather we've had this year, we enjoyed our dinner on the porch. We also finished up the Apple Cole Slaw from last night. It was better than it was last night. When I make it again, I'll be sure to make it the day before—or, at least early in the day.
The only secret I know for the pasta salad to use a big assortment of vegetables. I try to get lots of color into my mix. This afternoon I chopped zucchini, carrot, celery, green pepper, onion, cucumber, grape tomatoes, broccoli and I cooked fresh corn and cut it off the cob. The corn adds a nice touch of sweetness. Another hint is to put a large pot of water on to boil before you start chopping. A big pot of water takes forever to come to a boil.
To keep from washing more pots, when the water for the pasta came to a boil, I dunked in the broccoli to blanch it for a minute. (Yep, I held it by the stem and dunked it.) Then I let the corn (on the cob) cook for five minutes and took it out. Then I cooked the bowtie pasta in the same water. Much faster clean up than usual.
GARDEN PASTA SALAD
1 (16-oz) box of pasta -- bowtie, penne, or rotini
5 cups of chopped fresh vegetables
fresh parsley, chopped (if you have it)
1 (16-oz) bottle Italian salad dressing
3-4 tablespoons McCormick Salad Supreme Seasoning
Cook the pasta according to package directions. Rinse under cold water. Drain well. Put pasta and vegetables and parsley into a large bowl. Add salad dressing and Salad Supreme Seasoning. Toss gently until mixed well. Cover. Refrigerate for 4 hours, or until ready to serve.
This recipe filled a 5-quart plastic container.
One of the perks of dining on the porch is that we get to watch the creatures playing in our backyard. (It is not quite as much fun as watching Little Sister and Baby Girl, though.) Last night it was quail. Tonight we watched the rabbits hopping around and saw deer in the pasture. I'm glad we live in the country.