LASR Anniversary: Mariah Ankenman

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This post is part of Long and Short Review’s 9th Anniversary Celebration. Enter the Rafflecopter at the end of the post for a chance to win a $100 gift card or other prizes.

Summertime Garden Pasta Salad

My absolute favorite summertime dish is my Garden Pasta Salad. I found the recipe in an old cookbook of my mother’s and tweaked it over the years. I bring it to every summer picnic I attend. Adults and kids alike gobble up this dish, coming back for seconds, even thirds. Nothing says summer quite like eating veggies fresh from your garden. If you don’t have a garden, your local farmers market is always a great place for fresh produce or your local grocery store.


1 box of spiral noodles
1 bin of cherry tomatoes sliced in half
1 cucumber pealed and diced
1 bunch of green onions chopped
6-8 baby sweet peppers diced
1 Avocado chopped
1 can of kidney beans drained and rinsed
1 can of sliced olives
½ cup of Italian dressing
1 teaspoon of lemon juice
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon of garlic powder
½ teaspoon of celery salt
Salt and pepper to taste
Shredded Parmesan cheese

Cook the noodles and rinse with cold water. In a large bowl combine all the ingredients. It’s that easy!

This recipe is so tasty and versatile. I use gluten free noodles when my celiac friends and family come over (make sure any dressing you use is gluten free as well). Experiment with different veggies and spices. The possibilities are endless. You can add or subtract veggies biased on your taste or what’s in season. This pasta dish is so yummy it’s guaranteed to be a hit at your next picnic and the vegetables make it a healthy summertime meal!

LoveontheSweetSide_w9894_750Maggie Evans is back in Peak Town, Colorado to take over her grandmother’s cupcake shop, but problems keep arising. Is it rotten luck…or something more nefarious? To top it off, her former best friend/childhood crush, Colton Denning, won’t leave her alone. He’s sexier than ever. But Maggie has no time for love.

When his best friend comes back into town all grown up, Colton finds his feelings for her go far beyond friendship. Unfortunately, the pretty baker only sees him as the town playboy. He plans to convince her otherwise, but may not get the chance when someone starts threatening Maggie’s life.

Whether she likes it or not, Colton plans to take her safety into his own hands. How will Maggie keep her shop afloat with a madman after her? More importantly, how will she keep her heart intact when Colton admits her safety isn’t the only thing he wants in his hands?

About the Author: RWA® Golden Heart® Nominated Mariah Ankenman began writing at the tender age of five. Her first book “George and the Green Glob” received high praise from her mother. Many years, and green glob stories later, Mariah received a playwriting degree from the University of Wyoming. After a few years in Hollywood, working in “the biz,” she came home to the beautiful Rocky Mountains. When she’s not writing Mariah loves to read, crochet, and play her ukulele. She loves to hear from readers.

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  1. I eat a lot of cold pasta salads in the summer. They really hit the spot on hot, muggy days when you don’t want to heat up the kitchen. Your recipe sounds particularly good! Thanks for sharing it.

  2. Rita Wray says:

    I like the sound of the book. Thank you for the recipe.

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