Thursday, July 21, 2011

Thrifty Recipe- Pasta Salad

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In the summer, there is nothing like a cool pasta salad with lunch or dinner. It's relatively easy to make, portable, and can be changed and tweaked to fit your guests. In the past I have bought a ready-made kit, but have realized that it's thriftier and more fun to come up with my own combinations. Here are some suggestions of ingredients and mix-ins, what are some of your favorites?

Pasta Salad Formula: Base + Mix-Ins + Sauce= Pasta Salad

Base: One box of rainbow rotelle or other hefty pasta such as macaroni, cooked until done but still firm. Rinse and allow to drain and cool.

Mix-Ins: There are so many ways you can go here. Some suggestions are below.
  • Diced bell pepper
  • Diced onion (green or white)
  • Pepperoni pieces, quartered
  • Cherry tomatoes, halved
  • Tomatoes, diced
  • Cooked ham, diced
  • Peas
  • Broccoli
  • Olives
  • Feta cheese
  • Parmesan cheese
  • Chunks of cooked chicken
  • Chopped spinach

  • Tomato juice, makes it more of a gazpacho
  • Italian salad dressing, here is a recipe if you are interested in making your own
  • A combination of sour cream, mayonaise, or plain yogurt for a creamy salad
  • Vinegar and oil
Just mix the combination of Base + Mix-Ins + Sauce together, amount of mix-ins and sauce vary based on your taste.


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