This one made me HAPPY!
For the first time in several years I was able to attend the family gathering on Christmas Eve! If you haven't read my whole story, I've worked retail for a while... This year I was "fortunate" enough to have the store CLOSE two weeks before Christmas!!! Yeah, ok – not exactly celebratory, but I DID get to spend time with my family?!?

I'd been wanting to try this recipe for Dill Pickle Pasta Salad, and this was a good time to do it. It was at one of these gatherings years ago when I first had Aunt Pat's Salad, and well, that's one heckuva keeper!! So I slipped my pasta salad onto the buffet table and waited.

First, let me show you the competition:

Oh – and yeah, there were desserts galore (as usual).

So I'd doubled the recipe and brought about three quarters to the party – heck, I wanted some for myself! A pound of shells and a 16oz jar of “stackables” worked quite well for this – stackables were easy to dice, and provided just the right amount of pickle “juice”, which is essential!!!

I used shallots instead of onions because a couple family members have an adverse reactions to onion, but can tolerate shallots (which are in the garlic family). I measured out the ingredients for the “dressing” and whipped them all together in the food processor.

Here's the best part! My eldest younger brother (who is a “pretty good” cook in his own right ) had THREE helpings before he knew I had made it! In fact, he encouraged his son to try “the best pasta salad he's ever had”!!?!

Like I said – that makes me happy!

NOTES: I've made this a couple times since... 1) No need to blend the dressing mechanically unless you want ultra fine onion/shallot; 2) I'm not a huge fan of rinsing pasta, so I now drain, return to the pot and add the pickle juice. Stir for a couple minutes and almost all will absorb! Move to a large bowl to cool to room temp; 3) for a recent potluck I did all my chopping and made the dressing Wednesday night (stored separately), boiled the pasta and assembled Thursday night and served Friday lunch! Worked like a charm

Posted by Linda :
Thursday 12 January 2017 - 17:18:21
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