Greek pasta salad is one of Mr. Crumb’s favorite side dishes. He often requests it when we’re grilling and it brings a smile to his face to see it on a fellowship pot-luck table… in one of our bowls.
One down-side of that salad is that it’s hard to keep kalamata olives, feta cheese AND sundried tomatoes well-stocked, all at the same time. I can plan to my heart’s content, but as sure as the sky is blue, we’ll be out of one of these three crucial ingredients when Mr. Crumbs makes a last minute request.
The disappointment is heart-breaking!
You can then understand my delight when I was able to find another pasta salad recipe, one that is incredibly versatile, allowing you to throw is whatever may be in the fridge. And the best part?
You don’t have to rely on a bottle of salad dressing.
Without further ado, allow your taste buds to enjoy!
Homemade Italian Salad Dressing
1/2 tablespoon garlic powder
1/2 tablespoon onion powder
1/2 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1/2 tablespoon dried parsley
1 tablespoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
2 tablespoons water
1 cup vinegar (any flavor works well)
1 1/2 cups olive oil
Combine everything above in a jar or container capable of holding at least 2 1/2 cups. Cover and shake well. Recipe makes just scant of two cups of dressing.
Dressing adapted from Penniless Parenting.
This dressing is great on green salads and fabulous on pasta salads. You can go the common route of mozzarella cheese, pepperoni and black olives, or you can go a healthier route and use vegetables like the version we made. Using only what I had on hand – carrots, leftover broccoli, leftover corn, chopped red onion, fresh parmesan cheese and penne pasta – this recipe quickly became a new family-favorite recipe. Mr. Crumbs wore a satisfied smile after his fourth helping!
Homemade Italian Pasta Salad
8 ounces favorite small/medium pasta, prepared (elbow, penne, bow ties, etc.)
1-2 cups of fresh chopped vegetables (bell peppers, corn, broccoli, carrots, mushrooms, etc.)
1/4 cup chopped onion (optional)
2-4 tablespoons shredded cheese (parmesan, mozzarella, or another mild white cheese would be best)
1/3-1/2 cup prepared Italian Salad Dressing (recipe above)
Combine pasta, vegetables and optional onion in a large bowl. Add salad dressing to taste and top with shredded cheese, also to taste. Mix well.
The pasta salad could easily be turned into a dinner by adding diced or chopped chicken. Save time in your prep work by combining all the seasonings together in a jar. When you’re ready to make dressing, combine 1 tablespoon of seasoning with 1/2 tablespoon of water, 1/4 cup vinegar and 1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon of oil. Instant homemade salad dressing!