Saturday, May 12, 2012

Super Summer Pasta Salad (Gluten,refined sugar and garlic free)

First, I'd like to apologize.  I've been waiting the last week nearly for the weather to get nice and sunny before sharing this recipe, but the darn weather has just remained ucky and overcast.  So, I am sharing this now in the hopes that I'll "un-curse" the weather and we might see this thing called "the sun" again.

One of my "guilty pleasures" during the summer used to be those Suddenly Salads.  You know the ones I mean.  The pre-packaged salads in the box that all you had to do was make pasta and throw some water into a bowl with the powder mix and suddenly you had pasta salad?

Sadly, once the food allergies kicked in and such I was terrified of making pasta salad.  Which, after thinking about it the other night I was just dumbfounded at my pasta paralysis (say that 10 times fast...dare you ;).  I mean how hard could making pasta salad be?  So, I took the jar of Canola mayonnaise out of the fridge and I got my favorite gluten free "fun" shaped pasta out of the pantry (by the way have you TRIED Jovial Rice Pasta?  Seriously it TASTES like wheat pasta and is just awesome stuff!  I actually got a lecture from my husband when I served this pasta salad because he thought I was eating gluten for his benefit and was going to make myself sick.  It was cute).

Well, it turns out it's not.  Hard that is.  Actually, it's remarkably easy to do.  And you can make a salad that tastes a lot like that boxed stuff, but with much better tasting ingredients and it takes just about as much time to make.  How sad that it took me so long to realize it!

So, here you go folks.  Super Summer Pasta Salad (you hear me weather!  I'm posting a pasta salad recipe!  Get nice out!).

Super Summer Pasta Salad (gluten, refined sugar, garlic free)

  • 1/3 cup lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise (I use Spectrum Canola Mayo as it's garlic free...not an IDEAL choice, but the kids won't eat home made, yet).
  • 1 tbsp spicy brown mustard (I use Safeway brand as it's garlic free)
  • 1 tsp onion powder 
  • 1 tbs dried parsley flakes
  • 1/2 tsp dried tarragon
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  •  freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 2 cups uncooked rice pasta (your shape of choice)
  • 1/2 can artichoke hearts (be sure to get the kind in water.  They'll be garlic and corn free that way)
  • 1 small shallot, finely chopped
  • 1 cucumber (I used English, but only used 1/2 of it as it was HUGE) sliced (I quarter mine after slicing just for bite sized convenience)
  • 1/4 cup black olives, sliced thin (measure the black olives AFTER slicing them up) or other olives of choice.

1.  Prepare pasta according to manufacturer directions.

2.  While pasta is cooking cut up you veggies and artichoke hearts.  Add all of your dressing ingredients to a bowl and whisk well to combine.

3.  When pasta is ready drain and then rinse WELL in cold water till pasta is nice and cold (our well is super cold so it takes like less than 30 seconds for me).  Drain well and then put in your favorite salad bowl.
Add your other salad ingredients to bowl and then add dressing.  Toss well to combine (I used a wooden spoon for this part to avoid the pasta taking too much abuse.

4.  Let sit for a few minutes for flavors to merry.  Eat and enjoy!

Note:  Enjoy leftovers within a few days since there are cucumbers in it and those go funky quickly.  When eating the leftovers let the salad sit out for a few minutes to come more up to room temperature as rice pasta has this tendency to get hard in the fridge.

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