john nelson

John, Deb and Miles

OK, it’s not really Al Dente Pasta holding the Oscar.  It’s actually  Deborah Gaydos, wife of the Oscar winner, holding the pasta.   Let me explain.   Many fellow U of M alumna have gone on to Fame (with a capital “F”) and John Nelson is certainly one of them.  Among our group of friends, it was certainly an exciting moment when we got to watch John receive an Oscar for Special Effects in the movie, Gladiator!  Now John just finished as Special Effects Director for this summer’s hit “Ironman”.  Whenever John comes back to Ann Arbor, Jim Kruz gathers us together for an evening of fun, frolic and fantastic food.  We get to catch up with John, Deb and Miles and take delight in how wonderful it is to connect with old friends, even when it is just once a year.

The Theme of the Party: Fresh and French

Pasta Salade Nicoise Fit Perfectly!

Al Dente Pasta Salad Nicoise

1 bag Al Dente Pasta (I used Basil Fettuccine)

1 can (high quality) tuna fish, drained

3 tomatoes, chopped or pint of cherry tomatoes

1/2 lb. green beans, blanched in salted, boiling water until tender

3 scallions, chopped

1 cup black olives, halved

1 tablespoon capers (optional)

1/2 cup feta or fresh mozzarella

For the dressing:

1/4 cup vinegar (white wine or white balsamic)
1/2 cup olive oil
1 tsp. Dijon mustard
1/2 cup chopped parsley
salt and pepper

Whisk together the vinegar, mustard, and seasonings.  Slowly add the oil until combined.

Cook Al Dente Pasta as directed for 3 minutes.  Drain well and rinse in cold water.  Combine pasta with dressing and all other ingredients.  Season to taste.  Serve at room temperature.

Other “Famous” People Spotted Holding the Pasta

Lisa Marra, one of Michigan’s finest Interior Designers, and Al Dente’s First Employee

Vicki Honeyman and Nina Cambron:  Artists, Entrepreneurs and Long-Time Friends

A Toast to Jim Kruz (left front)!   Our host, who also was Al Dente’s First Photographer.