12ozbox bowtie pasta (cooked and drained according to box instructions)
7ozsmoked uncured ham steakdiced
1cupcheddar-monterey jack cheese blockdiced
1cupcucumberseeds removed and diced
1cupgrape tomatoes that have been cut in half
To make the dressing whisk together, in a medium bowl, the mayonnaise, whole milk, white vinegar, ranch seasoning, granulated sugar, salt and pepper. Transfer ½ cup of the dressing to a separate bowl to reserve. Set aside the dressing to thicken up while you make the rest of the recipe.
In a large mixing bowl add the cooked and drained bowtie pasta and allow it to cool for 10 minutes while you dice all your other ingredients.
To the cooled bowtie pasta add the remaining 1 cup dressing and toss it to coat all the pasta with the dressing.
To the bowl of pasta and dressing add the diced ham, diced cheddar-monterey jack cheese, diced cucumber, diced red onion and grape tomatoes halves.
Toss all the diced vegetables, diced ham and diced cheese with the dressing coated bowtie pasta until everything is evenly distributed.
Transfer to a large serving bowl, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to serve.
To Store: Keep any leftovers in an airtight container for up to 4 days.
To Freeze: This pasta salad does not freeze well.
If your ham steak has been packaged in a liquid, you will want to pat it dry before dicing it. I also like to trim off the tough edges before dicing it as well. This does not have to be done, as it is an edible part of the ham steak, however it is a personal preference for me.
Make sure that you dice all your vegetables, block cheese and ham steak the same size (approximately ¼-½ inch sized cubes). Your grape cherries only need to be cut in half.
After you boil your pasta, run it under cold water to cool. This stops the cooking process so the noodles don’t get overcooked and mushy.
I like the flavor or the block of cheddar-monterey jack cheese but you can certainly substitute a sharp cheddar, colby jack or block of swiss cheese.