Cavatappi with Avocado, Tomatoes, Basil and Goat Cheese

Thursday night was originally panning out to be a girls' night since Q was out with the boys playing poker, Austin was babysitting and Corbin was at a friend's cottage... filled with the promise of maybe popcorn or mac n cheese for dinner, followed up a relaxing evening of painting our nails, sharing secrets and enjoying a chick flick. But then Corbin decided (happily for us) that he'd be home for dinner after all and Plan B began to take shape. It had to be something pretty easy since I wasn't planning on going back to the grocery store for more ingredients. So I simply grabbed some fresh basil, summer-ripe tomatoes and goat cheese, as well as an avocado (!?) and found a recipe that assured me that these ingredients would all somehow work together. And they did. A summery, light, welcome-home meal for the prodigal son... who, immediately after eating (and gingerly applying aloe vera to his sunburn), headed back out with friends. Nice to know home is just a culinary pitstop on the road of life. And that's exactly the way it's s'posed to be when you're a teen.

Pasta with Avocado, Tomatoes, Basil and Goat Cheese

serves 4

1 box pasta of your choice

1 cup cherry or plum tomatoes, chopped

1 avocado, chopped

1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped

1/4 cup goat cheese, crumbled

2 tbsp olive oil

Cook pasta according to package. Drain and immediately toss with the goat cheese and olive oil to make a slightly creamy sauce. Add remaining ingredients and toss.

Rest of the week

July 26 Cobbled-together dinner of leftovers for Q; nobody else home for dinner

July 27 Teriyaki stirfry with pork, sliced peppers, onions and broccoli, tossed with vermicelli noodles

July 28 Pasta with avocado, tomatoes, basil and goat cheese with tossed salad