Warmer weather has finally come to me here in Siberia, Russia and that means it has definitely come to most of you. Summer means picnics, barbecues, and outdoor gatherings. One of the perfect food items to include this time of the year is cold salads. I love them in the summertime! I enjoy a good garden salad but every now and then a cold pasta salad can really hit the spot. I am not sure where I first found this recipe but I really like it as a change from the usual. Just a warning - the dressing is both sweet and sour.
1 1/2 cups uncooked elbow macaroni, (the original recipe calls for it to be cooked according to package directions for a salad. I just cook it al dente.)
1 cup celery, chopped
1/2 cup green pepper, chopped
1 cup cucumber, peeled and chopped
2 or 3 large tomatoes. chopped (you can use cherry tomatoes)
1/4 cup green onion, chopped (can use regular onion)
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup sugar
1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
1 tsp. dried basil
1/2 tsp. minced garlic
Combine ingredients in a saucepan and cook on low heat on top of the stove until sugar dissolves. Pour over salad.
Prepare pasta according to package directions for salad or al dente. In a large salad bowl add pasta and remaining ingredients. Toss with dressing. Refrigerate for several hours or overnight before serving.. Makes about 8-10 servings and keeps for several days.