Sunday, April 19, 2009

Insalata di farfalle with avocado and emmenthaler

I love the combination of avocado and emmenthaler in a sandwich, so I decided to try it in an insalata di pasta (pasta salad), and it worked just as well!

I call this insalata di pasta instead of pasta salad because to me, "pasta salad" conjures up images of elbow maccheroni smothered in some gooey mayonnaise sauce with a few sorry peas or carrot bits peeping out here and there. Since I can't stand mayonnaise, this is not a pretty image for me, and so I much prefer the term "insalata di pasta" which is really just a name for any type of pasta served cold with various accompaniments.

It's a great dish for summer, when it's too hot for a warm dish, and you can make it with pretty much any ingredients that appeal to you. I sometimes like to add bits of lettuce, peas, mozzarella, green olives - really almost anything will work. The one thing I advise against, however, is serving cold pasta with sauce, gooey mayonnaise or otherwise. The sauce will simply overwhelm the pasta; a light sprinkling of olive oil with perhaps some lemon juice or vinegar is all that's needed.

75 g. of farfalle (bowtie pasta) per person
50 g. of emmenthaler
1 ripe avocado
A spoonful of fresh lemon juice
Olive oil

Bring a large pot of water to a boil, add salt, and then the farfalle. Let them cook until they are al dente (done, but still firm), then drain them and run them under cold water while they are still in the colander.

Chop the emmenthaler and avocado into cubes, and combine with the farfalle in a large bowl. Drizzle with olive oil and lemon juice, and sprinkle with a pinch of salt and a very small pinch of pepper. Mix well and serve immediately or refrigerate until serving time.

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