Happy Labor Day everyone! I was trying to think of something different than my usual BBQ regulars. I knew we were grilling steaks and making a spinach salad but I wanted a pasta salad, because well, I love pasta. I decided to go to my Southern California roots do something with a Latin/Mexican flair. I was watching Simply Delicioso with Ingrid Hoffman and saw a pasta that she was working on and it gave me TONS of ideas. But you know that as a food blogger I can never leave anyone’s recipe alone, so off my little mind went with ingredients dancing in my head. I figured go big or go home, so I threw all of my favorites at this pasta, well not ALL of them, but most of them. Wow, who knew that my little thoughts would go so far?
I love it when my little mental foodie trips take me to a good place, and this of surely did! There is creaminess, spicyness, all of the things you would want from a great side dish. I know I have said we love things hot here, but trust me this is not too hot. You will love every bit of this pasta salad. I will bet money on it!! Kevin said that from now on if someone asks us to bring a dish to a BBQ this is the one we are bringing!!
1 pound curly pasta (rotini, cavatapi)
1/2 fat free condensed milk
1/4 cup olive oil
1 cup diced ham
1 cup crumbled Queso Fresco (can sub feta) cheese
1 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
2 jalapeno pepper, seeded and chopped
1 small red onion, chopped
1/2 cup packed fresh cilantro leaves (a good handful), chopped
1 lime, juiced
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 avocado, diced
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta, cook according to package directions. Drain, place in a large bowl and set aside.
While the pasta cooks, combine the evaporated milk, oil, Queso Fresco or feta, cilantro, lime juice and some salt and pepper in a blender. Puree until the dressing is smooth and creamy.
Place the drained pasta in a large bowl. Add the ham, bell peppers, onions, jalapeno, black beans, and avocado. Pour the dressing over the pasta and gently mix it into the salad. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and chill for at least 30 minutes or up to 2 hours before serving.
Labor Day Cookout Recipes:
Starters & Snacks
Salads & Sides
Hi everyone, I hope you all had a happy and safe 4th of July weekend. We had a lot food, friends, fireworks, and fun! I wish had taken pictures. I was a bad bad blogger. How can I not have a camera with me? I am hanging my head in shame.
What I do have for you is a twofer. Whats a twofer you ask? Well it is my attempt at being funny while I also bribe you to forget about my bad blogging habits with two recipes for the price of one. Well…..you get the recipes for free no matter how many I post at once…..OK so my attempt at being witty failed miserably …….moving on now!
I have lived in Washington state for about 5 years now but my heart still is in California. I lived there most of my life and I loved everything about the beach, sunshine, and weather. Living there I of course learned to love Mexican food. Hence last months 3 taco recipes. If I can put it into a burrito, taco, or enchilada I am a happy camper. I also was spoiled by having avocados ripe and tasty year round. For these recipes I took my love for all of those things and came up with a Cali/Mexican meal for your taste buds. I hope you like it!
I wanted the rice spicy but instead of just adding peppers for spice, I wanted to add extra flavor by roasting them. So I heated up the grill and oiled up my peppers and roasted away.