Fall has officially made it to upstate NY. It already looks like fall and I enjoy to seeing the cool breeze sweep the colorful leaves from the ground. But as beautiful as this season may be, I still hold tight to summer. Does that happen to you, too? [sigh…] Luckily, the weekend was very warm for this time of the year. So instead of making a warm comforting meal, I made this gorgeous bowl of pasta salad that to me screams summer days, and I love it any time of the year.
I am crazy about this recipe because who does not like guacamole? I know I do, and my friends do, too, which makes this recipe perfect for this season regardless of the weather, as it will be an awesome dish to share during a football game night. Instead of a bowl of simply guacamole, I will be serving this fulfilling pasta salad. Score!
What I love about a good pasta salad is that, depending on what you add to it, it can be a full meal, a side dish, or a great dish to pass at potlucks. Actually, pasta salads are one of the quintessential potluck dishes and one of the favorite things I liked to eat growing up. There are a handful of traditional pasta salads that people make over and over again, but there is really no reason to always make the same old recipe. One of the great things about cooking with pasta is that they are like delicious blank canvasses that can be dressed-up to your preference. I like to switch up pasta recipes by using ingredients that I enjoy, like avocados. And I like that Barilla pastas are flavorful and of superior quality, so they are guaranteed to go well with my recipes.
For this recipe I am using Barilla Orecchiette, but you could use any pasta cut you’d like. Barilla offers more than 40 varieties, including short cuts, long cuts, oven/baking cuts, and soup cuts. For pasta salads I would stick with a short cut, like this one. Here is a list of all the short cuts Barilla offers. Please make sure you use a great quality pasta like Barilla that always keeps its shape, consistency and “al dente” texture when cooked.
Doesn’t this salad look incredible? I still don’t think the picture does justice to how good it is. Make sure you try it at home!
- 1 box (1lb) Barilla Orecchiette pasta
- 4 hass avocados
- 1 small tomato, small dice
- Small handful cilantro
- 1 lime, juice
- 2 tablespoons sour cream
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- ½ cup cotija cheese
- Salt to taste
- Cook orecchiette pasta in boiling water according to box directions.
- While orechiette cooks, prepare guacamole.
- Mash avocado until desired consistency.
- Add tomatoes and cilantro as well as the juice of one lemon.
- Add sour cream and mix well to obtain a creamy guac.
- Toss and season with cumin and salt to taste.
- Once pasta is cooked, drain it and rinse it through cold water.
- Mix guacamole and pasta together and serve with a sprinkle of cotija cheese.