Get ready to embark on a culinary adventure with Frog Eye Salad – a delightful fusion of pasta, fruit, and sweet goodness that will tantalize your taste buds. This unique salad, featuring acini de pepe pasta, pineapple, mandarin oranges, and a creamy dressing, is a crowd-pleaser at any gathering. Whether you’re hosting a potluck, celebrating a special occasion, or simply craving a refreshing treat, Frog Eye Salad is sure to impress. Join us as we explore the recipe, cooking tips, variations, and even keto and low-carb versions of this beloved dish.
12 oz acini de pepe pasta
2 (20 oz each) cans pineapple tidbits, drained and juice reserved
1 (20 oz) can mandarin oranges, drained
1 cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
3 eggs, beaten
1/2 cup shredded sweetened coconut
1 cup mini marshmallows
8 oz cool whip, thawed
Cook the Pasta:
Cook the acini de pepe pasta according to the package instructions until al dente. Drain and rinse with cold water to cool the pasta quickly. Set aside.
Prepare the Dressing:
In a saucepan, combine the reserved pineapple juice, granulated sugar, flour, and beaten eggs. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until the mixture thickens to a custard-like consistency. Remove from heat and let it cool completely.
In a large mixing bowl, combine the cooked pasta, drained pineapple tidbits, drained mandarin oranges, shredded coconut, and mini marshmallows.
Add Dressing and Cool Whip:
Once the custard mixture has cooled, pour it over the pasta and fruit mixture. Gently fold until everything is evenly coated.
Add the thawed cool whip to the bowl and gently fold it into the salad until well combined.
Chill and Serve:
Cover the salad and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or until chilled. Before serving, give it a gentle stir and garnish with additional marshmallows or coconut if desired.
Cook Notes and Variations:
Add Some Crunch: Incorporate chopped nuts such as pecans or almonds for added texture and flavor.
Boost the Fruit: Experiment with additional fruits such as sliced grapes, diced apples, or berries to enhance the salad’s freshness.
Switch Up the Dressing: Instead of the homemade custard dressing, you can use instant vanilla pudding mix combined with pineapple juice for a quicker version of the dressing.
Make it Tropical: Include other tropical ingredients like diced mango or kiwi for a unique twist on the classic recipe.
FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions):
Q: Can I use a different type of pasta? A: While acini de pepe is traditional for Frog Eye Salad, you can substitute with small pasta shapes like orzo or even cooked tapioca pearls for a similar texture.
Q: How long does Frog Eye Salad last in the refrigerator? A: Frog Eye Salad can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. However, it’s best enjoyed within the first 1-2 days for optimal freshness.
Q: Can I make Frog Eye Salad ahead of time? A: Yes, Frog Eye Salad is a great make-ahead dish. Prepare the salad as directed, cover, and refrigerate until ready to serve. Just give it a gentle stir before serving to redistribute the ingredients.
Q: Can I use fresh fruit instead of canned fruit? A: Absolutely! Feel free to use fresh pineapple chunks, mandarin orange segments, or any other fresh fruit of your choice. Just make sure to adjust the sweetness to taste accordingly.
Keto and Low-Carb Versions:
For those following a keto or low-carb diet, here are some modifications to make Frog Eye Salad more suitable:
Low-Carb Pasta: Substitute acini de pepe pasta with shirataki noodles or zucchini noodles to reduce the carb content.
Sugar-Free Sweeteners: Use a sugar-free sweetener such as erythritol or stevia in place of granulated sugar.
Low-Carb Fruit Options: Opt for lower-carb fruits like berries or diced peaches instead of pineapple and mandarin oranges.
In conclusion, Frog Eye Salad is a delightful and versatile dish that adds a burst of flavor and color to any table. With its combination of pasta, fruit, and creamy dressing, it’s a refreshing treat that’s perfect for potlucks, picnics, or any occasion. Whether you stick to the classic recipe or get creative with your own variations, Frog Eye Salad is sure to be a hit with family and friends. So gather your ingredients, whip up a batch of this delicious salad, and enjoy the taste of summer in every bite!
Share your experience with this recipe and any unique variations you try. Happy cooking!