Aunt Carol’s Pasta Salad

Aunt Carol's Pasta Salad
If tuna makes your hair stand up you can leave it out, but it adds a nice little extra to the flavor and texture.
Print Recipe
Aunt Carol's Pasta Salad
If tuna makes your hair stand up you can leave it out, but it adds a nice little extra to the flavor and texture.
Print Recipe
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Cook the pasta according to the package's directions. Pick a fun shape!
  2. Drain the pasta in a colander. I don't rinse it.
  3. Let the pasta cool. If you don't let the pasta cool before you mix in the mayo, it gets oily and weird. If it's cold outside, I usually "porch it", stirring it occasionally to let the steam out and let it dry. Alternately, you can rinse it under cold water, but I think that takes a little of its flavor, and then it's wet and you have to pat it with paper towels to dry it off.
  4. On tuna in pasta salad: you don't want big chunks of dry tuna, so although I am almost always a "solid white" girl, in this case, chunk white or even chunk light are great. That said, there is no tuna except Bumble Bee.
  5. Drain the two cans well, and mash them finely with a fork.
  6. Chop your three hard boiled eggs small.
  7. In the bowl with the tuna, add your chopped eggs and start with a cup of mayonnaise.
  8. Throw on your cool pasta...
  9. ...and mix well. If were any other person in the world, at this point I might add celery or onion. But I'm not.

    NOTES ON MAYO:

    1. There is a personal taste factor in the mayonnaise amount in pasta salad. You want it to stick together, but not be too wet.

    2. Unless you are making it yourself, do NOT approach any mayonnaise-based task with anything but Hellman's. Unless you're on the west coast in which case you may use Best Foods, because it's the same thing.

  10. PRESENTATION NOTE: you can serve your pasta salad in the same bowl in which you mixed it. Just heap it in the middle with your mixing spoon, run a paper towel around the edges of the bowl, then push the pasta back to the edges of the bowl. Voila!

    If you keep it in the refrigerator a while before you eat it, you may want to mix in a little more mayo before serving since it absorbs into the pasta.

Recipe Notes

Never will onion or celery enter a pasta salad on my watch. That said, they're part of Carol's recipe, so I feel obliged to report them to you for your consideration.

Sometimes if I'm feeling sassy, I add some curry powder or dill. Dill or paprika would also make nice garnishes, since it's a little pedestrian in appearance.

The kids love this. We had it for dinner one night, they requested it for breakfast the next morning and then they begged to finish it off at the next dinner. 

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