Monday, June 2, 2014

Mexican Pasta Salad

Most of the time, I make pesto (or infused simple syrups) with leftover herbs. Those are definitely my two go-to uses for everything from leftover basil to rosemary to parsley. But last week, when I was faced with a bunch of leftover cilantro, I wanted to try something a little different. So I turned the leftovers into a refreshing dressing that got mixed into this vibrant and flavorful pasta salad.

Mexican Pasta Salad | The Economical Eater

Mexican Pasta Salad
Yields: 8 servings
For Salad:
-1 pound farfalle pasta (or pasta of your choice)
-1 pint grape tomatoes, halved
-1 cup frozen or fresh sweet corn kernels
-1/4 cup diced red onion
-1 tablespoon diced pickled jalapenos
-Salt and black pepper, to taste

For Dressing:
-1/4 cup finely chopped cilantro
-Juice of 1 1/2 limes
-1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
-1 teaspoon chili powder
-3 tablespoons olive oil
-Pinch of granulated sugar
-Salt and black pepper

1.) Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil; add pasta and cook according to package directions. Drain and set aside.
2.) In a medium-sized bowl, rapidly whisk together the ingredients for the dressing. Dunk in a piece of the cooked pasta and taste; adjust seasoning as/if needed. Set dressing aside.
3.) In a large bowl, mix pasta with tomatoes, corn, red onion, and jalapenos. Add dressing and toss until pasta and vegetables are coated nicely (but are not overdressed). (The amount of dressing you make should be perfect for 1 pound of pasta). Taste and add salt and pepper as needed.

This pasta salad can be refrigerated for up to 24 hours before serving.

Mexican Pasta Salad | The Economical Eater

The bright, flavorful salad dressing mixed with the plump, juicy tomatoes, spicy red onion, and sweet corn was a divine combination - especially when served with veggie sausages and burgers (for the omnivores, obviously) cooked on the grill. I loved how the farfalle pasta's nooks and crannies soaked in all of the dressing, but really any pasta would do well here. 

Mexican Pasta Salad | The Economical Eater

Bonus: This pasta salad is also vegan!

What's your favorite side dish to bring to a cookout? 

1 comment:

  1. I love this idea, Michelle. I often have tons of leftover cilantro and need to try this next time.