I have been chomping at the bit to make this salad and the tomato harvest is finally coming in! Recently every time I my family someone makes this salad. I think if we started making something else people would get mad. My sister sent me this recipe via a long chain of all the others she has shared it with, I took a few liberties with it and I’ve already inhaled the results!
Chopped salad is great for potlucks and picnics. It’s also a great change-up from the usual leafy salad, here the lettuce is finely chopped and combined with bunch of fixings like tomatoes, bacon, and gorgonzola cheese. A tangy dressing coats everything. If you’re making this for a party or potluck, toss the salad and dressing together just before serving.
I’m not sure where the original recipe came from, but it includes chicken and scallions so feel free to add those if you have them. I made the dressing a little tangier, and it’s such a great all-purpose dressing I’d encourage you to make a double batch so you have leftovers. If you’re a vegetarian try toasted walnuts or pecans in place of the bacon. My version also has lots more lettuce, if you wanted to have a higher concentration of the noodles, bacon, cheese, and tomatoes use just half a head of lettuce. Or double everything but the lettuce for a huge salad to share!
Chopped Salad with Honey Mustard Dressing
1 head lettuce (green-leaf shown)
1 or 2 tomatoes, diced
1/2 cup crumbled gorgonzola cheese
4 – 6 thick cut slices bacon, cooked until crispy
1 cup dry pasta like datalini or elbows
1/2 cup olive oil
3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 small clove garlic, minced or grated
1 teaspoon dijon mustard
1 tablespoon honey
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
pinch of crushed red pepper
a few grinds fresh ground black pepper
1. Cook the pasta according to package directions.
2. Wash and spin the lettuce dry. Chop into bite sized pieces, take a few minutes to really cut it into small shreds so the salad gets thoroughly combined.
3. Crumble the bacon.
4. Combine the dressing ingredients in a measuring cup and whisk to combine.
5. Toss all of the salad ingredients in a large bowl, then combine with the dressing and serve.