This salad is a summertime staple at our house, because it's nice to have a big vat of something in the fridge on a hot day; that way people can just grab a bowlful whenever they happen to get hungry. There is absolutely nothing fancy, elegant, or especially innovative going on here: it's just an old school pasta salad like Mama used to make, only with more veggies and less saturated fat. (In fact, as the gentle reader may notice, it's remarkably similar to the potato salad I posted a few weeks ago; in food - as in so many other things - familiarity is the very essence of comfort.) Anyway, a batch of this never lasts more than a day or two around here, so if you're in the market for a quick, filling dish that is super kid-friendly and a guaranteed hit at picnics, cookouts, potlucks, etc., look no further, because this is your man!
Picnic Pasta Salad
~ 1 lb. fusilli
~ 1 cup frozen peas
~ 1 onion, diced
~ 2 stalks celery, diced
~ 2 carrots, diced
~ 1 red bell pepper, diced
~ 2 tbsp. dill pickle relish
~ 1 tbsp. each: mustard, vegan Worcestershire sauce
~ 1 tsp. hot sauce (more or less to taste)
~ 1 tsp. each: salt, dill, parsley
~ A few grinds of black pepper
~ 3/4 - 1 cup Vegenaise (or vegan mayo of your choice)
~ Cook the pasta according to package directions, adding the frozen peas in the last minute of cooking. Drain in a colander, rinse with cold water, and set aside.
~ Place the chopped onion in a dish with a little water and microwave for 2-3 minutes; drain and set aside to cool (NB you can omit this step if you have no objection to raw onions).
~ In a large bowl, combine all the ingredients from the relish through the black pepper and mix thoroughly.
~ Add the vegetables and cooked pasta, and mix to make sure everything is coated with the dressing. Cover and chill for at least an hour before serving cold.