Easy Pasta Salad

Eclipsapalooza 2017

Living in the Midwest was especially cool this year because we got to experience the solar eclipse. Our wonderful friends (Ann and Rick) were gracious enough to host a spectacular Eclipsapalooza party in Columbia, Missouri. It’s  only a one and a half hour drive from us, so we packed up the car and headed south. Pasta salad, Pepé and Claude in tow. They were expecting quite a few guests so there weren’t enough rooms for us to stay in the house, so we set up our tent in their backyard. We had a few other campers, but most either lived near by or stayed in a local hotel.

A freind of ours, (Ram) took this amazing photo of the eclipe and was kind enough to share it with us.

A couple of days earlier my hubby and I were sitting by the pool and I said, “should we take Pepé and Claude?”  My husband said, “sure, why not?”  I mentioned that they didn’t have proper eclipse glasses, but my hubby reminded me that I was capable of making them. So, that it was I did.

Here’s a picture of Pepé and Claude wearing their glasses in our tent next to the coffee maker. Claude insisted that we bring some Irish Cream Liqueur to add to our coffee.

These are very custom made eclipse glasses. Claude’s head is 1/2” bigger than Pepé’s so I made sure that each pair fit perfectly. One thing that didn’t cross my mind in this process was how they were going to wear them. Once I was done making the glasses and I tried to put them on my little friends, I noticed that neither of them have ears. This might be one of the reasons that they never listen to me when I’m telling them what to do in the kitchen or wherever. LOL  No worries, I was able to use some kitchen twine to tie them behind their heads. Perfect! We are now ready to go!

I have to point out the five blueberry pies that one of the guests (Mary) made. They are made from blueberries that grow in her own yard and the pies are decorated like the various stages of the eclipse. Very creative. There were so many amazing and creative dishes that I’m not going spend much space highlighting my humble, but easy pasta salad. It’s really super easy and I don’t think all the photos are necessary.

Did I mention the band? The band was really great. Can’t wait to hear them play again some day.








Easy Pasta Salad

This is an easy and versatile dish that can be made ahead and modified in many ways.
Cuisine: Italian
Servings: 10


  • 12 Ounces Tri-Color Rotini Pasta
  • 16 Ounces Cherry Tomatoes (or any tomato cut up into about the same size)
  • 1 Large Cucumber
  • 1 Medium Red Onion
  • 8 Ounces Italian Salad Dressing
  • 10 Ounces Queso Fresco Mexican Cheese (or Feta or Cheddar)
  • Salt and Pepper to Taste


  • Boil pasta per package instructions. I like mine a little al dente, so I usually cut 1 or 2 minutes off the suggested boiling time. Plus, this will help if the salad is being made in advance. You don’t want soggy, mushy pasta.
  • Cut the cherry tomatoes in quarters.
  • Slice the cucumber in about 1/4” - 3/8” thick then quarter those slices.
  • Slice onions about the same size.
  • Toss all in a large bowl, crumble cheese on top, add dressing, salt and pepper, stir and enjoy.


You can really add or delete just about anything in this dish. You can add summer sausage, shrimp, chicken, artichoke hearts, black olives, bell peppers, etc. Be creative. Make it your own. This is just a base recipe.

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2 thoughts on “Easy Pasta Salad”

  • I laughed so hard when I saw Pepe and Claude with there eclipse glasses on! Pasta salad looks good. Might have to make some of that.

    • Thank you. I realize I’m a grown woman who plays with dolls, but I know plenty of grown men who really like Pepé and Claude too. Thanks again for your comment. Glad I put a smile on your face. Cheers!

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