Thursday, July 5, 2012

Pasta Salad

We had a quiet Independence Day.  Well, as quiet as one can be in a city that hosts a two-hour parade and a two-hour fireworks display at dusk.  Add to that the neighborhood pyrotechnics and it's hard to escape the booms and sirens.  It was 102 degrees when the parade started.  It was even too hot to sit on the front porch and cheer!!

The Baker and Oliver got in a walk while the temperature was only in double digits.  They strolled past the floats that were being assembled at the fairgrounds.  A fireman offered Oliver a ride on his fire engine--the "token" dalmatian perhaps.  Oliver declined by a wag of the tail.

I stayed home and made a version of my mother's pasta salad.  It's from memory but close.  Mother loved a picnic.  It could be on the side of the road (Virginia had lots of "wayside" stops on major highways and "blue"highways when I was a child) or a family reunion.  She always took fried chicken, a pasta salad, cole slaw and corn bread.

Our pasta salad accompanied cole slaw and barbecued pork.  Later, while we watched "A Capitol Fourth" on PBS, The Baker brought out strawberry shortcake.

Almost My Mother's Pasta Salad for 8

2 cups small elbow macaroni, cooked according to package directions
1/2 cup finely diced celery
1/2 cup minced red onion
2 Tbsp chopped parsley
1 cup of mixed cherry tomatoes, halved or quartered
1/2 cup mayonnaise
3/4 tsp dry mustard
1 1/2 tsp superfine sugar
1 1/2 Tbsp cider vinegar
3 Tbsp sour cream
Salt and pepper to taste

Combine the first five ingredients in a large bowl.

Combine the rest of the ingredients in a small bowl and whisk until well blended.  Toss with the pasta.

Refrigerate, covered, for several hours before serving.