Friday, May 30, 2014

Italian Deli Pasta Salad - 52 Church Potluck Side Dishes

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Did you happen to catch yesterday's post???

I had a Whoop de Doo.

15 guests in my back yard and LOTS and LOTS of food!  Started posting the dishes with a spectacular Pistachio Crusted Spiral Pork Chop Bite (yes, that's bacon, pork wrapped pork, Summer in my back yard!).

But as much as I love grilling for a Whoop de Doo, Man does not live by grilled meats alone (sigh).  So as much as I ponder the meats, the side dishes are just as important.  I like this as a side since it can (and actually tastes better if..) made in advance.  Several hours or even overnight.  This frees you up to do the last minute grilling.

I also love it cause it tastes soooo good!

It smells and tastes just like a visit to an Italian Deli!

This recipe does fall under the category of, "who does he think he is???".  It was inspired by a recipe I saw in this month's Food Network Magazine.  I made a few changes that I believe really make this a winner.

First the major change... Deli style Brown Mustard Vinaigrette added to the mayonnaise.  After all, what's deli food without Deli Style Brown Mustard (plus it makes this salad unique)!

Next... Italian spices.  Specifically, Herbes de Provence.  Hey... It's an ITALIAN DELI, use Italian spices.

And finally, Tomatoes.  I used Roma tomatoes cause it almost sounds like Rome (pretty famous Italian City), but mostly cause I like tomatoes.

Served cold, creamy, vinegar tasting and LOADED WITH ITALIAN DELI TASTES!!!

Enjoy, I did and so did my Whoop de Doo guests!

OK... here's what I did...

Italian Deli Pasta Salad

  • 1 Pound Rotini Pasta, Cooked according to package directions (Or, 1 minute less for Al Dente Texture), Drained
  • 1/4 Cup Mayonnaise
  • 1/4 Cup Deli Style Brown Mustard
  • 3 TBS Red Wine Vinegar
  • 1 - (16 Ounce) Jar Giardiniera (Pickled Vegetables, found in the pickle relish section of the store), drained and chopped
  • 1 Cup Diced Provolone Cheese
  • 1 Cup Diced Salami
  • 1/4 Cup Herbes de Provence (or substitute fresh chopped herbs of your choice)
  • 2 Firm Roma tomatoes, Diced
Cooking Directions
  1. Prepare Pasta according to package directions. Couple of tips, Salt (not oil) is what makes the pasta NOT stick together. Make the water salty as the ocean (about a half cup). Don't worry, most drains off), And speaking of draining. Just drain the pasta, do not rinse. the starchy water coating helps the sauce to absorb into the pasta instead of just pooling (usually on the bottom of the bowl). Finally, only cook the pasta for one minute less than the box says for a more chewy al Dente taste).
  2. While the pasta is cooking, thoroughly mix together the Mayonnaise, Brown Mustard and Red Wine Vinegar.
  3. When pasta is drained, return to pot, add sauce and mix.
  4. Now add all remaining items and stir to combine.
  5. Cover and chill overnight (or for a couple hours at least in the refrigerator to allow the flavors to mix).
  6. Serve Chilled and ENJOY!!!


This recipe has been added to my growing list of "52 Church PotLuck Dishes"!

A list of something NEW worthy of being shown off at a neighborhood BYODish (Bring Your Own Dish) Party, a Family special occasion dinner, Any Big Holiday Gathering or of course that glorious day when you bring a dish to share with your Church family...

Ages ago, literally almost a half century ago I was listening to our pastor talking about a PotLuck Dinner. It happened to be scheduled around a church work day when we were expected to weed, polish and do general cleaning and maintenance around the church (you know, back in the day when there were no no-wax floors and church pews smelled of Old English furniture polish). I am of course paraphrasing, but as I recall the pastor said,

"A potluck, like a church requires work. At a potluck everyone is expected to contribute.. At a church no one should come empty handed and no one should leave unfed".
I will confess that in my youth I brought more store bought plastic spoons and forks than I ever brought covered dishes and crock pots of fresh made love and caring delights. But now that I have become a hobbyist cook, I occasionally am reminded of those days and people from my youth. I reminded and I do wish that I could drop a dish of some new creation on those old tables at my fondly remembered Liberty Baptist Church.  Tables covered with newspapers and loaded with God's bounty prepared with love and caring... Enjoy


So,  I am pleased to list this as one of my Growing list of  "52 Grilling Time Secret Extras" or "52 Ways to Cook BBQ and Grilling Recipes"!!!

Well over 52 recipes actually as I just can't stop... Over 100 in one grilling season (I love to grill!). But not just leat... Drinks, Condiments (LOTS of different BBQ sauces), Drinks, Desserts... even specialty items like GRILLED Pizza, and fun shaped Watermelons.  Easy and these ideas will make you the MASTER of your Backyard Domain!


So,  I am pleased to list this as one of my Growing list of  "52 Specialty Salad Recipes"!!!

Sometimes they are the main course, sometimes a lunch and sometimes they are the side dish... And if you count Jell-o salad you can even make a dessert of a salad.  Here are a few of my favorite salads that get far more Ooohs and Aaahs than that simple chopped head of lettuce.

Links include Potato Salads, Cole Slaws, and Plenty of greens and fixins' Salads... And more than a few matching FRESH MADE Jam Jar make it yourself Salad Dressings!


Come and find me on Pinterest... Any of my "52 Ways to cook" Boards are worth following.  If you like this post, please take a second and "Pin" this to your own boards... Better yet, if you are part of a foodie group board please take a second and add this post to your group pins... best way to show your Love!

And BTW, if you are not yet part of a group board, drop me an email at and request to be added to my group board... FAVORITE FOOD BLOGGERS! (be sure to include your pinterest ID when you write)  Once you are added, any pins you add will be seen by 10s of THOUSANDS of followers of the board (and growing daily).

Rules, only 2... 
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