So I've never been much of a pasta salad fan.
And I've only ever made one kind of green salad.
The kind that has some type of standard lettuce, tomato, carrots... maybe some red or yellow or orange pepper diced and thrown in and maybe some celery. Top that with some ranch dressing and that's what you might find on our dinner table to accompany many a meal.
Let's just say it's dinner time at our house, and you are in our kitchen. Ignore with me the fact that our kitchen is decorated in Gaping Holes In the Counter and Perpetually Open Cabinets.
Sit down to dinner with us for a meal that includes a salad:
Immediately following our dinnertime prayer, or even before, the boys will begin The Tomato Chant.
"Does it have tomatoes?"
"Do I have to eat them?"
"Are those red things tomatoes?"
"Do I have to eat them?"
(Mercy doesn't join in because she happens to like tomatoes. I'm waiting for her to join in anyway because she faithfully mimics everything else her older brothers do. Josiah doesn't chant yet. Before dinner, he alternates between screaming and sitting tearful and silent with his hands folded.)
With all this hot weather we've been experiencing, I've been less inclined to cook up something hot for the family in the kitchen at dinnertime and more inclined to try an alternative.
Sometimes that alternative has been just plain leaving the house. Spontaneously fleeing to the beach where it's cooler with a bunch of snacky picnic dinner items has been a common occurrence.
What I'm here to share with you today is a recipe for a pasta salad that doesn't remind me of the kind that you get in the deli section of your grocery store. Maybe that's what I like about it. That and the fact that it doesn't heat up my kitchen or require really much time to prepare at all.
And it's what we had for dinner last night.
In a large bowl combine:
1 can drained kidney or garbanzo beans
2 tomatoes, diced (soon to be coming from our garden!)
1-2 avocados, diced
1/2 chopped onion, red or walla walla variety(from our garden!)
1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup cubes of mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup of fresh basil, chopped(also from our garden!)
Cook up some smallish pasta. I used curly noodles last night but shell pasta or whatever would work, too. Rinse it under cool water in your strainer when it's all done. Add the pasta to your large bowl of chopped up things when it's cool and drizzle it all with some olive oil and fresh ground pepper.
Oh and the answer to the question raised in The Tomato Chant is "Yes."
"Yes. You will eat whatever we put on your plate."
(We try to ensure that there are a few tomatoes in their serving but not too many. They might like them someday.)