Saturday, April 16, 2016

Peas and Bow Tie Pasta Salad with Baden Dressing

I love this simple salad with a delicious homemade dressing I named the Baden Dressing after Baden, PA where the Mother House of the Congregation of the Sisters of St. Joseph-Baden is located.  I frequent this Mother House to attend meetings since I am an associate of this congregation.  I love eating some of the prepared salads with their delicious dressing served at their cafeteria.  The proportion of the ingredients in one of the dressings they used was shared with me by Fred the head chef of the Mother House cafeteria.  It is 1 part apple cider vinegar (not white vinegar), 1 part oil and 1 part sugar.  I refer to this as the basic Baden dressing.

They had served Peas and Bow Tie Salad at one of the special occasions at Baden.  In the recipe they shared with me they used store bought Italian dressing. They also used fresh red onions and shredded cheddar cheese as part of the ingredients. I wanted a version of this salad where the ingredients for the dressing is from scratch and straight from my spice cabinet and uses the basic Baden dressing I mentioned previously. What I did was follow the 1:1 proportion of the apple cider to sugar and lowered that of the oil to 1/2 part and added the spices found in the store bought Italian dressing to this basic Baden dressing.

I really shouldn't be eating peas and peanuts since my arthritis sometimes flares up on the joints of my fingers when eating either of these foods but I couldn't stop eating a serving instead of just a tablespoon for tasting. It is that good.  And so simple. The saltiness of the peanuts complements the sweetness of the dressing and gives the salad a crunchy texture.  The cooked frozen sweet peas in the salad makes it irresistible. You can add cheese and red onions if you want and also increase the amount of oil but why would you?  This is good enough.  If you are in a hurry you can use store bought Italian Dressing but I tell you this dressing is worth preparing. Enjoy this salad in what seems to be the start of Spring unless this moody weather changes its course once again.

Peas and Bow Tie Pasta Salad with Baden Dressing

  • 6 oz cooked bow tie pasta or farfalle 
  • 6 oz cooked frozen sweet peas
  • 1/4 cup peanuts or nuts of your choice
  • dry parsley flakes or fresh parsley for garnish

Baden Dressing
  • 4 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 4 tbsp sugar 
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • 1/2 tbsp dry onion flakes
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 1/8 tsp red pepper flakes (optional)
  • salt and pepper to taste

Mix all the ingredients except the bow tie pasta and peas in a small jar and shake with the cover on or just mix these ingredients with a fork in a small bowl.  Place the pasta, peas and peanuts in a bowl and pour the dressing over it and toss.  You can garnish with fresh or dried parsley if you like.

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