Mexican Pasta Salad

Wow, it's been forever. This is what happens in DC during August -- everyone goes on vacation, even food bloggers. The beau and I enjoyed a delightful week hiking in the Pacific northwest earlier this month, and I've just stayed in that vacation mentality with regards to posting new recipes and photos.

But I'm going to whip myself back into shape, starting with this delightful Mexican pasta salad. I feel like I've been making a lot of pasta salads this summer, but what's not to like about them? When you balance out a moderate amount of pasta (i.e.: carbs) with lots of fresh veggies and a light but flavorful dressing, you end up with a surprisingly healthy meal. Perfect for end-of-summer produce, too!

Mexican Pasta Salad
From Moosewood Restaurant Low-Fat Favorites
  • 8 oz short pasta (such as rotini, elbows, penne, or a mix)

  • 1 cup fresh or frozen corn kernels

  • 3 scallions, sliced

  • Bell pepper (any color), chopped

  • 14-oz can black beans, rinsed and drained

  • Medium tomato, chopped

  • 1/4 cup olives (Spanish, or whichever variety you prefer), chopped

  • 1/4 cup cilantro (more or less, to taste)

  • 2 teaspoons olive oil

  • 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice

  • 2 teaspoons cumin

  • Salt and pepper

  • Cheddar cheese, grated (optional--vegans can omit)

Cook pasta according to package instructions. Add the corn kernels to the pot during the last 2 minutes of cooking time. Drain, rinse with cold water, and set aside.

Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine scallions, bell pepper, black beans, tomato, olives, cilantro, olive oil, lime juice, cumin, and pepper. Add the pasta and corn, and salt to taste. Serve with grated cheddar (if using) and extra cilantro.