Pesto Macaroni Salad with Tomatoes, Corn and Fresh Mozzarella
June 29, 2010
My mother and I are a lot alike. People often confuse our voices on the phone, we’ve been known to (independently of one another) buy the same shoes, and we share the same Sicilian temper which flares up on occasion.
But I am not my mother and this is not her justifiably famous macaroni salad. I can’t compete, so I won’t even try. In fact, I still don’t know exactly what she puts in it, so I simply made up my own, and the two salads can stand proudly side by side, as individuals, just as we do.
This salad is a twist on the traditional, adding in some old world flavors and the sweetness of fresh corn so readily available in summer. It’s an easy side salad for a summer BBQ or picnic and makes enough for a crowd.
Tell me, do you have a family recipe which you’ve tweaked or updated?
1 lb salad macaroni (small, short cut, uncooked)
3 ears of fresh corn, cooked and cut off the cob
1 pint grape tomatoes (the smaller, the better)
3 stalks of celery, small dice
2 shallots, minced
6 oz basil pesto
1/3 cup mayonnaise
2 Tbsp red wine vinegar
8 oz fresh mozzarella, cut into 1/2″ cubes
salt and pepper to taste
Cook and cool the salad macaroni. Toss it with a tablespoon of olive oil to keep it from sticking together while you prepare the rest of the salad.
Boil the corn for about 5 minutes and then shock in ice water to halt the cooking. When cold, cut the corn kernals off the cob. Dice the celery and mince the shallots.
In a large bowl, combine the cooked macaroni, fresh corn, tomatoes, diced celery, and shallots. Fold in the pesto, mayonnaise and red wine vinegar. Fold in the diced mozzarella and season with salt and pepper to taste.