I´m teaching my mom how to bake. So she comes to my house more often than before, some would even go as far as to say more often than it´s healthy for our relationship. Just kidding, though once in a while we become very aware that we need a little vacation from each other, and try to go our separate ways for a few days, but that´s not what I want to talk about, even though I can write oh-so-many posts about it.
She is the bag lady. Seriously. It´s just the way she does things. I don´t know how she manages to go back and forth with so many unnecessary things every single day she leaves her house. It gets pretty annoying at times, for her especially, but, again, that´s not what I want to talk about.
A few days ago she came to my house bearing avocados. Walking to the train station she passed one of the street vendors, the vegetable guys that have piles of incredible fruit at incredibly good prices. So, obviously she bought some. Just because they were cheap. We can start a debate about wasting money on things you don´t need, like pink and yellow socks just because they were five pairs a buck, but at least you can eventually wear them or give them to your eight year old niece.
We´re talking perishables here. And avocados to be specific. Why on earth would you buy a kilo of perfect-to-eat-now avocados when even if you made an effort could probably eat only one a day? Because they were so cheap! she answered… and forgot them in my fridge! A direct consequence of leaving my house with so many bags that she never really knows if she´s forgetting something.
I managed to give some to my neighbor and was still left with three, by now overripe, paltas as they are called in Spanish.
This pasta salad was the result. I started to look for bookmarked dressings I knew I had set my sight on, and miraculously found one fairly quickly, before my avocados turned an irrevocable brownish hue, that not even the processor and lemon juice would be able to conceal.
I had bought some purple tomatoes (tomates morados) and decided to make a spring salad, considering today is a spring-like autumn day. Warm and sunny, unbelievable for this time of year.
PASTA SALAD WITH AVOCADO DRESSING
Note: Avocados turn an ugly color pretty quickly, so have the pasta ready before, or at the same time, as the dressing.
2 cups uncooked short pasta
2 medium purple tomatoes
1 cup arugula, loosely packed
1 Tbs chopped chives
½ cup hazelnuts, chopped
Avocado dressing (recipe below)
Cook pasta in boiling, salted water until al dente. Drain and run through cold water.
Put in a bowl and add the avocado dressing, Mix well. Add chopped tomatoes, hand torn arugula, chives and hazelnuts. Mix lightly and serve.
by Elizabeth Terry (A Celebration of Women Chefs) via The Best American Recipes 2000, by F. McCullough and Suzanne Hamlin
2 or 3 Haas avocados
Juice of half a lemon
1 garlic clove, minced
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
½ cup water
Salt and pepper to taste
In a food processor put all dressing ingredients. Process until desired consistency.
Check seasoning and use immediately.