One of the great things about summer is all the wonderful side dishes and salads that go with cookouts, picnics and get-togethers. Pasta salad is one of my favorites because you can make it so many different ways and use any combination of fresh vegetables that you like.
I don't remember where I stumbled on this recipe, but the original one is from Paula Deen. I changed it up to include the veggies we like and you can do the same. There's no right or wrong way to make this salad...just make it with fresh ingredients your family loves and it will be a hit. The secret is it's dressing. This is my version. You will need the following:
1 box bow tie pasta (or any shape you like)
1 cup balsamic vinaigrette (I used light)
1/4 cup mayonnaise (I used light)
1 Tbs sugar
1 medium zucchini
1 medium yellow squash
1 sweet red pepper
1 yellow pepper
1 cup cherry or grape tomatoes halved
salt and fresh ground pepper to taste
1 Tbs chopped parsley
Cook the pasta according to the package directions. While the pasta is cooking, whisk together the vinaigrette, mayonnaise and sugar in a large bowl and set aside.
Chop the veggies into bite sized pieces.
When the pasta is done, drain and rinse under cold water. Add the pasta and veggies to the bowl with the dressing. Add the salt, pepper and parsley. Stir until well combined and refrigerate until ready to serve.
It was soooo good but was even better the next day! I would recommend making it a day ahead.
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