Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Summer Survival

It is hot. It is damn hot. If you are like me, you don't want to turn on the oven or slave in the kitchen. So, here is a remedy for the heat: my mother's recipe for Macaroni Salad. Sounds simple, and it is, but it is my absolute favorite. Give it a try, and let me know what you think!

Mom's Macaroni Salad

1 large bag pasta (we like shells)
1 jar sweet pickles
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1 larger can sliced olives, drained
about 2/3 cup mayonnaise
about 1/3 cup ranch dressing
1 T. mustard
salt and pepper to taste
dried Italian herbs - I like the "pasta sprinkles" from www.penzeys.com

Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain and rinse in cool water and allow to sit. Cut up as many sweet pickles as you want - we use a lot and cut them into chunks. In a large bowl, place drained pasta and diced pickles. Add shredded cheddar (my mom cuts a cheddar brick into small cubed pieces) and drained olives. Stir together. Add mayo, ranch dressing, mustard, salt and pepper, and herbs (a sprinkling of oregano, parsley and basil - if you don't have it, skip it). Stir together and decide if you think it needs more mayonnaise or mustard - it should be wet and held together, but not soupy. Put into airtight container and keep in the refrigerator. Enjoy!

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