Seafood Pasta Salad (gluten-free, dairy-free, egg-free)

 

 

This is a recipe passed down from my mother and grandmother.  They traditionally made it for our July 4th celebration along with blueberry muffins since usually by early  in July, we’d have fresh peas as well blueberries in central New Hampshire.  They made it with canned salmon, crab and shrimp but these days fresh or frozen seafood is also widely available.  My mother also always made it with the pasta shells for esthetic reasons but you can use whatever type of pasta your family likes.

You can also make it two ways, like the potato salad and the cole slaw, with either a vinaigrette or mayonnaise.  I prefer the vinaigrette since it has a lighter taste, especially in the July heat.

Mix in a medium sized bowl:

  • 6-8 ounces of cooked salmon
  • 4 ounces of cooked tiny shrimp
  • 6-8 ounces of cooked lump crabmeat
  • 6-8 ounces of cooked peas
  • 3 stalks of celery diced, don’t forget to add the leaves as well — they have a wonderful celery taste
  • 1/4 cup chopped red onion, chives, or scallions
  • 2 cups cooked gluten-free pasta [here I’ve found that the quinoa pasta works the best because it doesn’t get all mushy if it sits for a day]
  • 1/2 cup of your favorite vinaigrette [I make mine with 1/2 olive oil, 1 tablespoon spicy mustard, 1/4 cup rice vinegar, 2 tablespoons agave nectar (or 1 teaspoon stevia), and 1/4 cup of water.]; if you need to, you can add more vinaigrette especially if you let the salad sit awhile in the refrigerator since the pasta will absorb the moisture.
  • OR 1/2 cup of your favorite mayonnaise mixed with several tablespoons of cold water [the water will loosen up the mayo and make for a lighter dressing without affecting the taste].
  • Salt and pepper to taste along with some fresh parsley to taste

I like to serve it on a bed of lettuce with some cherry or grape tomatoes as a garnish.  This recipe serves 4.  Delicious!

Potato Salad 2 Ways (dairy-free, egg-free)

 

 

German style Potato salad.  I like to use the small multi-color potatoes because they make the salad more interesting.  And you don’t have to peel them, just cut them into quarters and cook.  For this recipe,

  • Use a half-pound of these potatoes.
  • While they cook, dice up a couple of stalks of celery and some scallion (I use scallion instead of onion because it adds the flavor of onion but doesn’t give me the digestive issues that raw onions give me).
  • Cook 2-3 slices of bacon, chopped.
  • If you don’t have a vinaigrette already made, mix up one of your favorites or use a bottled vinaigrette.
  • Put about 1/2 cup of the vinaigrette in a medium sized bowl, add the celery and scallion along with the crumbled bacon.
  • When the potatoes are cooked. drain and put them directly into the mixture.  Adding them when they are hot helps the potatoes absorb the dressing.
  • Salt and pepper to taste.
  • You can serve this hot but I prefer to let it sit overnight and let the flavors meld. I often leave the bacon bits out until I’m ready to serve this so that they stay crispy.
  • Makes 2-3 servings.

 

Traditional Potato Salad.

One of my favorite parts of the potato salad my mother made was the hard boiled eggs.  Since I can’t eat eggs any longer, I simply

  • mix together cooked potatoes (1/2 pound of the small potatoes and perhaps, if I’m feeling like it, a diced small sweet potato),
  • diced celery and scallions, along with some crumbled bacon.  Dressing consists of:
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 teaspoon prepared mustard
  • 1 tablespoon agave nectar
  • 1/2 teaspoon of my favorite herb blend (McCormicks or Mrs. Dash)
  • Salt and pepper to taste.

If you can still eat eggs, by all means add 1-2 diced hard-boiled eggs.  This makes 2-3 servings.

Cole Slaw Two Ways (dairy-free, egg-free)

 

 

With a small cabbage (I like to use Chinese cabbage), remove outer leaves and cut in slides or wedges.  Put in your food processor and pulse until medium dice (depending on what you like, me I like to taste the cabbage but I know people, like my husband, who like cole slaw finely diced).

Put in a medium to large bowl depending on how much cabbage you have and add:

  • 1/2 cup diced scallion
  • 1/2 cup shredded carrots

To make the dressing, put in a small bowl:

  • 1 cup mayonnaise (see my recipe for egg-free mayonnaise)
  • 1/2 teaspoon celery seeds
  • 1 tablespoon agave nectar

Stir until mixed and add to the cabbage mixture.  Depending on the amount of cabbage you have, you may need a  little more or a little less mayonnaise.  Salt and pepper to taste.

If you’d rather not have a mayonnaise-based cole slaw, here’s a vinaigrette to use instead:

Blend together:

  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup of your favorite vinegar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons agave nectar
  • 1/2 teaspoon celery seeds
  • 1 tablespoon of your favorite mustard

I use a canning jar and shake it until emulsified.

Egg-Free Mayonnaise

Its been quite a few years since I was able to use mayonnaise products since I became allergic to eggs.  Most mass-produced mayonnaise also includes oils that I can’t have like canola or soybean.  About three years ago, I learned about agua fava, the liquid that you drain off the can of beans, like garbanzo or kidney, which can be used as an egg substitute.  I resisted this for quite a while since I didn’t relish the idea of using this liquid — really turned me off in fact.  Last year, I really wanted some cole slaw and was tired of my vinaigrette version.  It tasted like the Cain’s mayonnaise I grew up with!  I was thrilled.  So, with summer approaching and the time for cooler foods, here’s my recipe for egg-free mayonnaise using agua fava and some salad recipes to go with it. And the great thing about it is that you don’t have to worry about it spoiling like you do egg-based mayos.

Put in a blender:

  • 1/3 cup agua fava
  • 1/4 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 2 tablespoons vinegar (I like the rice vinegar but feel free to use your favorite, or lemon juice if you like)

Start blender on a low setting and begin slowly, and I mean really slowly, drizzling in oil.  You’ll add 1 cup of oil total for a thick mayonnaise, or 1 1/4 cup for a thinner dressing.  I like to use 1/2 cup olive oil and 1/2 cup avocado oil.  Makes me feel less guilty using oils that are actually good for us.

Makes a little over 1 cup of mayonnaise.  Use in your favorite recipes.  Most people won’t be able to tell the difference between this and the mayo you buy.