I dressed up the classic Italian trio of mozzarella, tomatoes and basil with marinated artichokes. It looks so yummy on a pretty platter set out on a buffet. Using fresh mozzarella is the key to its great taste. —Margaret Wilson, San Bernardino, California
The homemade oil and vinegar dressing is what makes this salad unique. Plus, it features two kinds of lettuce and garden-fresh tomatoes and onions. To save time, I make the dressing in advance and set it aside until supper.—Michele Bently, Niceville, Florida
A mother deserves a beautiful salad that combines her favorite flavors, like fresh peppery arugula, golden raisins, crunchy almonds and shredded Parmesan. I put this simple salad together for my mom, and the whole family ended up loving it! —Nicole Rash, Boise, Idaho
I "invented" this salad as I went along...it's a combination of various pasta salad recipes I'd seen. It can be served as a side dish, of course. In summer, however, my husband doesn't care for hot meals, so I make it as a main dish.
We're recent city transplants with two young children, ages 6 and 3.
This chilled pasta salad is pleasing to the eye and the palate. Susan Branch likes to serve it when sweet corn, tomatoes and zucchini are in season around her Kalamazoo, Michigan home. Her make-ahead favorite is lightly dressed with tarragon vinegar, olive oil and dill week.