Friday, October 5, 2012

BLT Pasta Salad

I'm out of bread.  It's a very sad day.  There's this closeout grocery store about 45 minutes from me that had my gluten free bread on sale THREE FOR A DOLLAR.  At the regular store it's five bucks a loaf.  15 loaves for the price of one.  I bought 50.  And we ate sandwiches like they were going out of style for quite awhile.  Now that I'm out of bread, I can't bring myself to pay $5 again and I haven't made back over there to see if they have more.

But I wanted BLT.

So I made pasta, and darned if it isn't even better than I was hoping.

Ingredients for dressing:
8-12 ounces sour cream
big spoonful mayo- maybe 1/2 cup?
ranch dressing mix:  I like both of these and interchange them when I can't find one or the other.  You could of course use your own, but these are gluten free and delicious.

Other ingredients:
1 pound cooked pasta
12 slices bacon, chopped
a bunch of chopped tomatoes (I never measure those but I usually use between 1/2 box and whole box of grape tomatoes, or else 2-3 big tomatoes.  If you use big ones, take out some of the seeds so it doesn't get too soupy and juicy.)
minced onion, however much you like
fresh basil (I do about 12 leaves and then wish I had put more.  But I think if there's a cooking question, the answer is always basil.  Except for when it's garlic.)
a head of romaine lettuce, chopped

My mom taught me to always tear lettuce and never chop it with a knife because the edges turn brown.  And while this is true, it's also true that I'm a fast-eating BLT pasta piggy and the lettuce doesn't have time to turn.  Chop chop, baby!  Much faster.

I make the dressing first in a big bowl and then start adding the other things one at a time, putting the lettuce and pasta last.  That way the tomatoes and onion and bacon all get a couple extra minutes in the sauce to start mixing flavors.

 Deliciousness in a bowl.  I swear this dish is near perfect.  My dad who dislikes pasta salad but was very hungry got a small bowl and then came back for a bigger second serving.

I served it to my daycare babies and she sucked all the dressing off each piece and set it on her tray.  She's asking for more sauce here, not more actual food.  But then I scooped all that food back into her bowl and she ate it and THEN got seconds.

I will say that if you use gluten free pasta, it doesn't do well second day.  The pasta tends to get a little chewy and weird, and somehow it sucks up all the sauce while still leaving it dry.  I have to add milk if I'm eating it leftover.  But there aren't usually any leftovers!  And that might just be a gf problem.  I don't remember what regular pasta does.  It's been awhile...

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