I had no idea we would enjoy this summer salad so much! The dressing used here is one that I often make to wilt greens with in the summertime, and it’s just as good served with pasta, tomatoes, and BACON. 🙂
3 cups elbow macaroni, cooked according to package directions
2 cups chopped leaf lettuce
2 cups sliced grape tomatoes
3-4 scallions, thinly sliced
1 lb. sliced bacon, chopped
2 Tbs. spicy brown mustard
1/3 cup mayonnaise
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup cider vinegar
kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
In a large skillet over medium high heat, cook chopped bacon until browned and crispy; set bacon aside on a paper-towel lined plate to drain.
Add mustard, mayo, sugar, and vinegar to bacon fats in skillet, whisking until smooth; season to taste with salt and pepper. Place cooked macaroni in a serving bowl with lettuce, tomatoes, and scallions; dress with 2/3 of prepared dressing; chill for several hours. Just before serving, dress with remaining amount of reserved dressing, as desired.
Pasta salad is a popular tailgate dish, but to achieve the perfect dish for the whole pre-game party, there are a few secrets:
- Always dress your salad while it’s warm. That helps the pasta soak up all that flavor.
- BUT set aside 1/3 of the dressing to add right before you serve it!
- Finally, make your salad within 12 hours before you serve it so it doesn’t start looking sad and mushy.