This hearty salad is great for potlucks, or even a light summer meal -- it is quick, easy, and comes with a dressing that does not make the salad soggy. If there are vegetarians in the crowd, serve the bacon separately as an optional addition. Other ingredients can be added, but be careful with foods like diced tomatoes, which will make the salad too wet and are best served on the side. Also be sure to make this salad far enough in advance so that it can sit in the refrigerator for a while to let the flavors meld. And just for fun, why not make up a batch of Seven Layer Bars for dessert?
Seven Layer Salad
1/2 medium head iceberg or romaine lettuce
1/2 C. sliced celery
1/2 C. sliced bell pepper (any color)
1/2 C. sliced red or other mild onion (Vidalias would work well)
1 package (10 oz.) frozen peas, thawed
1 C. mayonnaise
1 T. sugar
1 1/2 C. shredded Cheddar cheese
4-6 sliced crumbled cooked bacon
Arrange first five ingredients in layers, in the order listed, in a 9x13-inch glass baking dish. Spread mayonnaise over the top to cover completely and sprinkle with sugar. Cover evenly with cheese. Refrigerate at least four hours. Top with bacon or serve on the side. Serves 6.