Summer Vegetable Salad

Mike and I were busy in the kitchen this past weekend.  With the help of 8 faithful workers, we managed to complete food prep in under 4 hours in order to serve 500 people the following day at our church's Star Spangled Spectacular.  We pressed out 200 hamburgers, made approximately 100# of baked beans from scratch, and created this yummy summer vegetable salad.   

This summer vegetable salad went over well the last time we held this event, so we decided to kept it on the menu.  The menu also offered watermelon, hot dogs, chips, and pulled pork sandwiches.  

** On a side note, feeding people at this event is a huge undertaking.  Mike spent literally 31 out of 38 hours at church preparing, cooking, serving, and cleaning.  His day started at 9 am on Saturday, he came home to rest 4 hrs, then went back at 6pm and stayed overnight minus 3 hrs for a nap, and returned for a full day on Sunday {6 am to 11 pm}.  Big thanks to Mike and all the other guys who stayed up through the night to keep the fires going while roasting 2 whole pigs!  Many thanks to the groups of volunteers who helped with the shopping, pulled the pork, to those who served the food, and the ones who stayed to clean.  We appreciate all of your dedication and service!

Okay, back to the salad :)  Mike and I got many requests for this recipe, so I thought it would be a good idea to share it here on Food and Gladness.  The recipe we use serves 70 people, so I converted it back to only 8 servings.  The picture below shows the 6 batches we made to serve between 400-500 people. 

It is best if you use fresh or frozen peas and green beans, otherwise the salad gets too mushy after marinating overnight.  The corn can be fresh {cooked or roasted} or canned.  If you are not making this for 500 people, it is quite simple to make.  This would make a great side dish at a family reunion or summer BBQ.  I hope everyone enjoys the upcoming holiday.  Here's to good food and gladness!

CLICK HERE for a printer friendly recipe

Ingredients for Summer Vegetable Salad (serves 8)

  • 15 oz can of shoepeg corn
  • 15 oz  fresh or frozen peas (blanched if fresh, thawed if frozen)
  • 15 oz fresh or frozen green beans (blanched if fresh, thawed if frozen)
  • 1 cup celery, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup bell pepper, small dice, any color
  • 1/2 cup white onion, small dice
  • 2 oz jar pimentos
  • Dressing: 1 cup granulated sugar, 1/2 cup canola oil, 3/4 cup cider vinegar, salt/pepper to taste

Directions for Summer Vegetable Salad

  1. To make dressing: In a large saucepan, over medium heat, cook sugar, oil, and vinegar together until sugar dissolves, stirring often.  Once sugar dissolves, remove from heat and allow to cool, approximately 30 minutes.  
  2. Place all vegetables into a large bowl.  Pour cooled dressing over the veggies, and toss together.  Salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Cover and chill in refrigerator at least 4 hours, preferably overnight.  
  4. Serve chilled using a slotted spoon.