Pasta salad is a wonderful food to have on a warm summer night. I've always enjoyed mixing things up, experimenting with flavors. This recipe is one I make all the time. I even made it for the bakery where it sold quite well. It was always a requested salad for events I've catered.
There are no strict measurements. You can add as much or as little of each item as you wish. Here's what you need:
- Tri-colored pasta
- Mayonnaise (Hellman's or Best Foods only)
- Creamy Italian dressing
- Red Bell Pepper
- Green onion
- Black olives (sliced)
- Cheddar cheese
- Feta cheese
- Parmesan cheese
First cook your pasta. I would get these huge bags of tri colored bowtie pasta for the bakery. I had so much in stock that I just BARELY used the last of it the other day.
Make sure after your pasta has boiled, that you rinse it well with cold water. This will keep the pasta from sticking together. Let cool and put in a large bowl.
Open up a can of sliced black olives. You can slice the olives yourself if you want, but for convenience sake.. buy sliced.
Chop 1/2 of one red bell pepper. Add to the bowl of pasta.
Grate 1 or 2 carrots and add to the bowl.
Chop up some green onion.
Grate some cheddar cheese.
Add to the bowl.
I love feta cheese so much! I dumped in this whole container. Use as much or as little as you want.
Add a handful or two of parmesan cheese.
I ONLY use Hellman's mayonnaise. Hellman's is the same company that makes Best Foods out west.
You only want to add enough mayonnaise to lightly coat the pasta. You don't want to go crazy with this so put a little in at a time until you get the right consistency.
This is a really good italian dressing I bought at Costco. I use this for marinades and on a lot of my salads. Love it.
Since you can't find it in your normal grocery store, use a creamy italian of whatever brand you like.
Add about 1/4 cup to your pasta and toss. Taste it. If you need more, add a little more.
Add some fresh cracked black pepper. You don't need to add any salt because the cheeses give enough saltiness to this salad. Trust me. I've accidently put salt in before and it is too much. Blech!
Stir well. Transfer to a different bowl if you want. Cover and chill. You can make this a day or two before you need it if you don't have time to make it fresh before the meal. Enjoy!