Friday, July 20, 2012

Pasta Salad with a Story

My blog started out as a place to journal my favorite recipes--my kids were leaving home for missions, college and marriage. It wasn't long till they got hungry, it happens you know. So I would field  several cooking questions each week or day as needed. Now I was happy to do this, I love chatting with my kids as they turned into awesome adults. 

Along came my blog--a place to journal family favorite recipes and some new recipes along the way. I occasionally put in a few family photos because my kids and grand kids are just so darn cute.
Then I thought, as long as I'm writing why not tell a few stories along the way. Food stories, family stories etc. That's the fun thing about a blog--it's yours to do as you please.

So the Pasta Salad Story:
In 1970 a new store moved to the small town of Pleasant Grove, that of itself was big news. Story Pharmacy moved to Main Street just a few doors south of Rexall Drug (it had been the only drug store in Pleasant Grove for about 100 years).
Story Pharmacy was run by the pharmacist Mr. Story. Mrs. Story ran the soda fountain I loved the soda fountain, they made a mean 'wild hourse' drink. But my favorite item on the menu was the pasta salad. It was served to go in a small plastic cup, it came with a slice of buttered toast cut in triangles. I really don't know why one would serve toast with pasta salad--but they did.
One must understand that the only kind of pasta served at my house (remember there are 5 brothers) was drenched in red sauce and had plenty of meat balls along side. So to be able to buy a cup of delicious pasta salad full of crunchy veggies, small shrimp, certainly from a can and a light sauce was delightful. As soon as I could drive in 1971 I often visited Story Pharmacy, just for their pasta salad. That is one great memory.
So when Candise made a pasta salad for a family party, I ate some in a cup and was taken right back to Story's sitting on the orange upholstered stools wishing I had a triangle of toast!

 So please enjoy Pasta Salad with a Story--served with a toast triangle if desired.
16 ounces small pasta, small shells, ditalini
1/2 cup roasted red pepper,chopped
1/2 cup black olives, chopped
1/2 cup chopped sweet/spicy pickles I used Famous Dave's
1/2 cup chopped green onion--whites and greens
1/2 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
1/4 cup milk to thin dressing
pickle juice to thin and add flavor
Garnish with 1/2 cup chopped parsley
Cook pasta in boiling salted water till done--don't overcook. Rinse in cold water till pasta is cool. Add the chopped veggies. Make the sauce by mixing the mayo, vinegar, sugar, salt and pepper. Thin to pourable consistency by adding milk and pickle juice. Pour dressing over salad and stir. If more dressing is needed just take a couple of tablespoons of mayo and thin down with pickle juice. Stir all ingredients together. Chill.
Before serving add small cooked shrimp and diced tomatoes. This makes a big salad--plenty to share.
The Pampered Chef Chopper is made for salads like this. Sometime I like a fine dice--this salad isn't that time. Chop things, no need to clean the chopper between. The chopper makes this salad a quick meal. Quick is good.
This recipe was inspired by Pioneer Woman


Cakelaw said...

A great story and a fab looking salad - thanks Cindy!

Rita said...

Cindy, that brings back so many memories of downtown Pleasant Grove back in the good old days! Thanks for sharing! But I have to admit that I spent a lot more time at the Rexall Drug Store because Kathy's mom worked there. But we also spent a lot of time at Ben Franklin's and Christensens.

Grandma Scott said...

Loved the story, and the pasta sounds great for a summer day !

Nedra said...

My Step Mother made a macaroni salad that was very much like yours. Happy childhood memory.

Amber said...

I love the stories! A story makes a good recipe great. Love you Mom!

Debra Eliotseats said...

A good pasta salad is hard to find. I posted one a while back but this might be my new favorite. Isn't it funny how certain memories are tied to specific foods (and vice versa)?

Liz That Skinny Chick Can Bake said...

This would make a great summer dinner! Love the memories that came with the recipe :) Have a wonderful weekend~

Candise said...

I wouldn't mind a cup of that right now. Tasty salad!!!

Julie said...

This recipe is fabulous! I love that you used pickles from Famous Dave's! I'd love for you to link this up to my Monday party. I'm also your newest follower. I'd love for you to follow back! :)


Julie said...

Thank you so much for sharing on Marvelous Mondays!