Tuesday, February 28, 2012

TIO Tuesday - Broccoli, Grape and Pasta Salad

I was looking for something to take for lunch to a friend's house when I happened upon this recipe on Pinterest (I honestly don't know how I ever managed without this site prior!). It looked great in the picture, so I thought I would give it a try. Typically at potlucks, there is some version of a broccoli salad, most of the time has raisins and sunflower seeds? I've never tried to make it before, and get this, I've never even purchased broccoli before! Crazy, I know. My family isn't terribly fond of broccoli, but when it's fresh like this, I think it tastes much better.
I let Anderson help with the chopping of pecans. He really got into it:
Look at his face, priceless!
I brought the salad for lunch and it was a huge hit. I kept the red onions on the side as Jen doesn't like them, but I highly recommend the salad with them. It was awesome! The crunchy texture, tangy flavor, perfect! You should really make it - today!  
1 cup chopped pecans
1/2 (16-oz.) package farfalle (bow-tie) pasta
1 pound fresh broccoli
1 cup mayonnaise
1/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup diced red onion
1/3 cup red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups seedless red grapes, halved
8 cooked bacon slices, crumbled

1. Preheat oven to 350°. Bake pecans in a single layer in a shallow pan 5 to 7 minutes or until lightly toasted and fragrant, stirring halfway through.
2. Prepare pasta according to package directions.
3. Meanwhile, cut broccoli florets from stems, and separate florets into small pieces using tip of a paring knife. Peel away tough outer layer of stems, and finely chop stems.
4. Whisk together mayonnaise and next 4 ingredients in a large bowl; add broccoli, hot cooked pasta, and grapes, and stir to coat. Cover and chill 3 hours. Stir bacon and pecans into salad just before serving.

***The only change I made was the pasta, I used the mini-bowties, because they're so cute.
FYI - if/when you make this, you will want the leftovers, don't say I didn't warn you!

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