1 Lb. Campanelle Pasta, Dry
1 Lb. Bacon, Thick Sliced, Diced
½ Cup Mayonnaise
2 Tbsp. Shallots, Minced
2 Tbsp. Basil, Fresh, Minced
2 Tbsp. Cider Vinegar
2 Tsp. Sugar
Salt and Pepper, To-Taste
4 Cups Romaine Lettuce, Chopped
4 Cups Grape Tomatoes, Halved


  1. Cook pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water (2 Tbsp. kosher salt) according to package directions.  To keep the pasta from getting soggy in the salad, shock it in an ice bath to stop the cooking process – transfer pasta to a bowl of ice water; drain well.
  2. Cook bacon in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat until crisp.  Transfer bacon to a paper towel lined plate.  Reserve 3 Tbsps. bacon drippings; set aside to cool to keep dressing from curdling during preparation.  
  3. Once bacon drippings are room temperature, whisk together mayonnaise, reserved drippings, shallots, basil, vinegar, and sugar in a large bowl; season with salt and pepper. 
  4. In a large bowl stir in pasta, romaine, tomatoes, and bacon; toss to coat.  Season salad with salt and pepper.

Tips on Keeping Pasta Salads Fresh – Layer salad components with the dressing on the bottom of the bowl – toss together when ready to serve. 

Prep – Make dressing and prepare most components a day ahead – store each ingredient separately in a plastic bag.

Transport – Either layered in bowl or in separate plastic bags in cooler with ice or gel packs. Makes:  20 Servings (15 Cups) Total Time: 30 Minutes – 243 Calories; 14 g total fat; 19g carbs; 1g fiber; 11g protein.

Recipe From Taste of Home, August 2012