Sister's awesome pasta salad

I have fabulous sisters. They have helped me through an incredible amount of crap. I am sure they will all have a spotlight on this blog eventually, but for now I would like to tell you about my sister Lissa. She is an amazing, beautiful woman. She has been by my side through all of my son's surgeries and hospitalizations. She genuinely loves my children, my husband and me. She has beautiful children, a beautiful home and she makes delicious food. Years ago, she and her husband opened up their home to me when I was going through a particularly difficult time in my life. During that time, I fell in love with the food my sister made. This pasta salad was one of those recipes I fell madly in love with. I make it often in the summertime. No other pasta salad compares, to be completely honest. Thank you to my beautiful sister! Not just for this recipe, but for your love and kindness and endless support.

This salad is extremely easy to make. I usually make an enormous batch, so I use our extra large saucepan to mix everything together. If you want a smaller batch, cut the recipe in half and use a large bowl.

In an extra large container/bowl/saucepan, combine:

16-oz. jar zesty Italian salad dressing

1-lb. box rotelle pasta, cooked and drained/rinsed

1 medium yellow onion, chopped

8 medium celery stalks, thinly sliced

16-oz. package cojack cheese, cubed

16-oz. tube summer sausage, cubed

3 13.75-oz. cans quartered artichoke hearts, drained

2 6.5-oz. cans pitted black olives, drained

2 8.5-oz. jars julienned sun-dried tomatoes, drained and chopped

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon ground pepper

2 teaspoons red pepper flakes

1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Mix well and chill overnight to allow the ingredients to marinate.

I have a large helping left in my refrigerator that I am going to go munch on! Perfect for a hot-weather day (finally).

Isn't summer wonderful? Sisters, too.

Sister’s Awesome Pasta Salad

You will never make another pasta salad again. This is my sister's recipe and it is the BEST!

Contributed by Megan Porta from pipandebby.com.

Published Jun 7, 2011

Serves: 24

Total time: 25 min

Sister’s Awesome Pasta Salad

Ingredients:

  • 16-oz. jar zesty Italian salad dressing
  • 1-lb. box rotelle pasta, cooked and drained/rinsed
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 8 medium celery stalks, thinly sliced
  • 16-oz. package cojack cheese, cubed
  • 16-oz. tube summer sausage, cubed
  • Three 13.75-oz. cans quartered artichoke hearts, drained
  • Two 6.5-oz. cans pitted black olives, drained
  • Two 8.5-oz. jars julienned sun-dried tomatoes, drained and chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground pepper
  • 2 teaspoons red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Instructions:
  1. Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and let sit overnight. Serve chilled.