This simple pasta salad recipe is one of the most requested recipes, but it is so deceivingly simple. The symphony of flavor is achieved with cheap, dried spices. Of course, anything with vinegar and oil always tastes a lot more intricate than it is.
It is difficult to give exact measurements on this salad, but you can adjust the spices a bit if you want to.
- One box multi-colored pasta spirals
- 3 Tablespoons (approx.) of canola or olive oil
- 5 Tablespoons (approx.) of apple cider vinegar (If you have a real problem with vinegar, use less.)
- Parmesan cheese: grated in the can
- Crushed red peppers: 1/2 teaspoon
- Dried garlic pieces: Around 1-2 tablespoon broken
- Dried minced onion: 1-2 tablespoons.
- Cayenne pepper: 1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon
- Kosher salt: to taste
- Black pepper to taste
- Boil the pasta until done. I usually add a few drops of oil and salt.
- Drain and cool.
- Add oil first and stir well.
- Add vinegar and stir.
- Add spices and stir well. Remember that you can always add more spices but you can't take them back. Always measure the more harsh spices (cayenne and crushed red peppers) in your hand instead of over the pot.
- Add generous sprinkles of Parmesan cheese and stir.
- Top the salad with more Parmesan, cover, and chill.
- If it will be more than a few hours before serving, stir well, and top with more Parmesan.
This salad has become one of my family's favorite salad recipes.