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Chicken Gorgonzola Pasta Salad with Bacon

D’Amico & Sons!  Ring a bell…?  If so, you probably live in Minnesota or Florida or have flown through MSP airport and had enough time to wander around for a bite to eat…and if this is so…you know what I’m talking about.

I wasn’t always one for pasta salads.  They were always bland and drenched in oil and vinegar and seemed to be a dumping ground for canned and often ignored veggies.  My nightmare of a pasta salad involves tri-color spiral pasta with a bottle of italian dressing, some canned sliced olives and if we are lucky…a dice of red bell pepper.  If that’s the best thing you can think of to do with some pasta…perhaps you should consider take-out!

Now that I’ve seen the light…I know the potential that lies in a well-thought-out pasta salad.  Think big…you probably can’t go wrong!  Visiting my husband’s family in Minneapolis, I was treated to D’Amico and Sons, and have been recreating various menu items ever since!

The weather has started to turn truly into spring in most of the country and what better way to welcome it than with a totally cold dish of hearty pasta?

Fun Fact:  Add buttermilk to regular mayonnaise and POOF!  You get ranch dressing.  No, really…nothing additional needed, unless you want it to look like ranch dressing, then you could add some things…ya know…like…herbs.  That’s it.  That’s all.  We were shocked – it tastes just exactly like ranch.  After we got over this fun little piece of info…we got on with the cooking chopping and mixing.

All ingredients in our version are just a guess…so we have chicken, not-all-the-way-sun-dried tomatoes, spinach, bacon and gorgonzola dressing.

I know it looks a little like butter…but it is actually really delicious creamy gorgonzola!  The dressing is simple…a little mayo, buttermilk, crumbled gorgonzola, salt and pepper.

Oh yeah, you’ll also need some pasta of your choice…cooked extra al dente!  Add the various components to the bowl, pour dressing over the top and drizzle.  Be conservative at first with the dressing, each piece should have a nice coating…but not be drowning in dressing.  Mix it up…then add the spinach.

Lastly, scoop onto a plate…and top with your perfectly cooked bacon crumbles!


5 Comments Post a comment
  1. Lynn Harker #

    Thank you thank you! I love this salad from D’Amico and wanted to make it this week- so appreciate that you did all the leg work on the recipe- great photo’s too! You made my day!

    May 11, 2012
    • Thanks! I’m glad you stopped by! Let me know what you think…I’m always open to tweaking the recipe for authenticity! If only I lived near a D’Amico & Sons… 🙂

      May 11, 2012
      • Bryan #

        Just an FYI, I deconstructed this salad, and when I had it, the tomatoes were Romas, not sundried. Now, they may also tweak the recipe and use sundried tomatoes in the winter when the tomatoes that we get in the north are bland and flavorless. If I were to make this salad in the late summer, I would most likely use fresh tomatoes diced, salted, and drained for 30 minutes or so.

        August 25, 2012
      • Thank you for your thoughts on the recipe. I’ll definitely try some summer tomatoes next time. Thanks for reading!

        August 25, 2012
  2. Brenda #

    I think that they roast the tomatoes and seed them before placing in the salad.

    July 8, 2013

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