May 16, 2015

southwestern pasta salad


I don't know about the weather where you live, but the weather here couldn't be any more perfect.  It's sunny, 75 degrees, and a slight breeze.  Perfect for grilling out with family and friends!  Here is a pasta salad that will compliment any meat or seafood, but can also stand alone as a vegetarian entree. 

Since I don't have a whole kitchen full of gadgets and tools I needed something that not only came together quickly, since I was short on time, but also something simple.  This pasta can actually be made even simpler with canned beans and frozen corn, but if I have the time I prefer fresh.  If you have a busy evening of ball games or meetings, make this ahead of time and pop it in the fridge.  Then when you get home... dinner is ready!:)

Servings 4-6
Total Time 30 minutes

  • 1 pound pasta, small
  • 1 1/2 cups cooked black beans (1/2 cup dry/1 can)
  • 2 ears of corn, kernels removed
  • 8 ounces mexican fresco cheese (crumbling cheese), crumbled
  • 1 1/2 cups salsa
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 limes, juiced
  • 1 tablespoons cumin
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 teaspoon course salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
  • 1 avocado, cubed  (tips and tricks: to cube an avocado)

1.  In a large pot, bring water to boil.  Cook the pasta according to package instructions, to al dente.  Rinse, drain, and set aside to cool.

2.  Meanwhile, in a small bowl whisk together the olive oil, lime juice, cumin, chili powder, garlic, and salt and pepper until combined. Set aside.

3.  In a large bowl, combine beans, corn, cheese, and salsa. Add the cooled pasta and dressing.  Mix until evenly coated.

4.  Top the pasta with cilantro and avocado.  Enjoy!!!

PS... Want some spice?  Drizzle with sriracha!  It's delicious!!

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