I had a childhood friend named Morgan. We were inseparable.
We went through a phase where we truly believed we were “witches” (this was around the beginning of the height of Harry Potter). We’d spend hours writing with quill pens, making wands and robes and dreaming up alternative lives for ourselves. Lives that involved Hogwarts, spells and pet owls. #nerds4life.
Morgan’s mom, Donna, was always there supporting our crazy fantasies. She’d pull out her sewing machine and hot glue gun and help us create our wardrobe of robes and wands. She always had delicious food for us to snack on when we were crafting.
Donna’s Everything Pasta Salad was one of my faves. She would make this salad for Morgan’s school lunch and I would eye it enviously until Morgan gave me a bite or two. I brought it up to Donna, and from then on she made sure to make the salad on occasion for us to eat while we were “quilling” away.
Donna’s Everything Pasta Salad is coined “everything,” not just because of all the delicious food it combines, but because of the meaning for me behind it. This salad represents my childhood with Morgan, and her friendship was “everything” to me.
Morgan and I have since gone our separate ways, not an uncommon thing to happen with childhood friendships. But, everytime I eat “Donna’s Everything Pasta Salad,” the vivid memories of witchcraft and wizardry shenanigans come flooding back.
This salad truly is everything.
- 6 oz. chunky pasta
- 2 cobs of corn (or 1 1/2 cups frozen corn)
- 2 apples
- 2 oranges
- 1 cup dried cranberries
- 1/2 cup pine nuts
- 1/2 cup red onion
- 1/4 cup fresh parsley
- 3 oz. gorgonzola cheese
- 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
- 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
- 1 clove garlic
- Salt and pepper
- Cook pasta until al dente. Set aside.
- Cut corn off cobs (Cook first, if desired.)
- Cut apple sand oranges into bite-sized chunks.
- Toast pine nuts over low heat on stove until golden brown. Cool.
- Mince red onion and parsley. Break up gorgonzola.
- Place all ingredients in large bowl and toss with dressing to taste.
- Combine all ingredients in jar and shake until blended.
*When corn is in season, we like to use it straight off the cob! If you'd prefer, you can cook it before adding to the salad.
*Add a protein like chicken or steak for a main-dish salad.