Crispy bacon, tender pasta, sharp cheese, sweet peas and cool, ranch dressing all together might just make the best pasta salad EVER! I don’t think you can ever have too many salad recipes in your recipe box and this one is an all time favorite.
This past weekend, the temperatures were perfect for sitting outside and enjoying a meal in the fresh air. Our deck, grill and furniture had been all set up and ready for another summer of lazy, enjoyable evenings. I was looking forward to putting my feet up and not really doing much of anything. Well, until the call came. My boy, Hunter, who’s a junior in high school asked if we could have a cookout on Saturday evening. Notice, how he used the ” royal we” term when asking, but then again, he asked. My response was, of course then asked how many would be coming. Well, that’s a funny question in this house because the number could go from one to 10 in moments. This time six, lovely, funny, smarty, self assured, grounded and happy people came over and settled in for a night of food and fellowship. When the girls came through the back door, the first thing they asked was, “Mama Mullins, what can we do to help?” That was an easy question and I quickly put them to work mixing up this salad.
While they added in ingredients and mixed, we talked about school, their day to day lives and plans for the future. It was absolutely wonderful. Having those sweet girls cooking with me was something especially precious since I’m a Mama of boys. Instruction gave way to giggles and before you know it, we were ready to eat. We all settled in, filled our plates and continued the fun around the supper table. Nights like that make me happy, really, really happy. I am glad by boy has great friends and thankful he shares his home with them. As always, my back door is open and everyone is welcome.
- 1 lb pasta - rotelli or elbow
- 8 oz cheddar cheese - cubed
- 1 bag (10 oz) frozen peas - thawed
- 8 strips cooked bacon - chopped
- 2 tablespoons chives - chopped
- 1 tablespoon parsley - chopped
- 4 tablespoons (2 packages) Hidden Valley Ranch Dressing
- 1 cup sour cream
- 1/2 cup mayonnaise
- 1 cup milk
- Cook pasta according to directions on box. Drain and rinse. Place pasta in a large bowl along with cheddar cheese, peas and bacon.
- Mix dried ranch, sour cream, mayonnaise and mix together until smooth. Pour over pasta and other ingredients and sprinkle on chives and parsley. Toss together until well mixed. Serve immediately. Can be stored in fridge - may need to additional sour cream/milk if pasta sticks together.