Macaroni Salad

Options.  In football it helps manage the game clock.  At the grocery store it’s paper or plastic.  At the bar it’s Bud Light or Bud Heavy.  At the salon it’s blonde or brunette.  The world is full of options, and this weekend I’m hitting you with a bevy of options in a very serious department – pasta salads!

As we near the end of summer I thought this would be a great time to bring you some of my favorite recipes for my favorite side.

This pasta salad could easily be called “Nostalgia Salad.”  My mom used to make this salad when I was little and I remember how cool I thought pine nuts were.  What kid thinks pine nuts are cool?  So I recently went trolling through her recipe cards to find this gem.

Finding it was the first challenge, the second, what the heck is salad oil?  I scanned the list of ingredients and was stumped, “salad oil,” I am not familiar with you.  I googled.  Nothing.  I searched further.  Apparently this salad oil thing is a fraud.  It’s whatever you want it to be really – vegetable, canola, corn, peanut, or other light oils.  I opted for vegetable oil.

Simple flavors, great textures, this mac salad is a definite keeper.

As a self-proclaimed mayo addict, you might find it difficult to believe that only one of these salads I’m sharing contains my eggy friend.  I told you guys, I’m trying to give you options.

Macaroni Salad


1 pound medium bow tie macaroni

1/2 cup olive oil

1/2 cup vegetable oil

1/2 cup white wine vinegar

1 1/2 teaspoons salt

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1/2 teaspoon white pepper

1 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1/2 cup roasted red pepper pieces

1 bunch broccoli, cut

1/2 cup toasted pine nuts or slivered blanched almonds


Cook macaroni according to package.  Drain.

In a small bowl or pint jar combine olive oil, vegetable oil, white wine vinegar, salt, Dijon mustard, pepper and Parmesan.  Cover and shake well.

In a large bowl combine macaroni and peppers.  Pour on dressing and toss.  Cover.  Let stand for four hours.

In a large sauce pan blanch broccoli in boiling salted water for 1 minute.  Drain and cool 30 minutes before serving.

Add broccoli to the pasta mixture and 1/4 cup pine nuts, toss.

Spoon on remaining nuts and serve at room temperature.


3 thoughts on “Macaroni Salad

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