Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Picnic Pasta Salad

I like to have a big vat of something in the fridge on hot days, so people can just grab a bowlful whenever they get hungry, and this salad is a summertime staple at our house. Be forewarned that 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, you may notice its remarkable resemblance to the potato salad I posted a few weeks ago; in food - as in so many other things - familiarity is the essence of comfort.) Anyway, a batch of this pasta 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: 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: prepared mustard, vegan Worcestershire sauce, hot sauce (Frank's is good)
~ 1 tsp. each: salt, dill, parsley
~ ½ tsp. garlic powder
~ A few healthy grinds of black pepper
~ 3/4 - 1 cup vegan mayonnaise, such as Just Mayo or Vegenaise

~ 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.


  1. This would be great for a picnic! Bookmarked/evernoted!

  2. See you next Tuesday, Elizavegan!

  3. Sir: you will notice there is not so much as a mention of bottled Italian dressing in this recipe. Apologize at once or expect my challenge!