Tuesday, July 10, 2012

EASY Cheese Tortellini Salad

Summer came around a little late this year, it rained all June! I seriously didn't put on a pair of shorts until last week. But with summer in full swing (I hate to be a whiner but could someone turn it down a couple degrees, haha) we're in Summer Food Mode!

To me summer always means BBQ and Salad. I love a fresh salad on a hot day, but for Lee a salad is just not enough to fill up. If I can get away with it I will try to dirty the least amount of dishes possible, so making one big salad for both of us would be ideal. I figured what's more filling then Cheese Tortellini?? and it's vegetarian so two birds, one stone (or one dish I should say . . . and no birds because it's vegetarian).
Here's my recipe for Cheese Tortellini Salad: Feel free to add or subtract what ever you want, this salad is great made with whatever is in your fridge or garden!
1 Package Fresh Cheese Tortellini (we use Olivieri Tri Color Cheese Tortellini, but feel free to use your own fresh handmade tortellini if you are that talented. You'll need about 700gr). I like using Olivieri pasta, honestly I would prefer to make it homemade but making your own tortellini is a lot of work, and if you give Olivieri's ingredient list a look you'll see there are NO fake weird ingredients. I think they are a good alternative to homemade.
1 Head Broccoli 
1/4 Head Cauliflower
1 Red Bell Pepper (or yellow, or Orange)
1 Jar Artichoke Hearts (most of the time I don't have artichoke hearts in the pantry so we usually omit them)
5 or 6 Grape Tomatoes 
A small amount of red onion (make sure not to put too much in or the whole salad will taste like red onion)
3 or 4 Radishes sliced thin
If you like olives add some of those in, I think some cooked peas or fresh corn would be really good in there too.

1/4 cup of Extra Virgin Olive Oil (we like our dressings really vinegar-y if you don't add more oil)
1/4 cup of Red Wine Vinegar
1/4 cup Sour Cream
1 Clove of Garlic
1 Tbsp Sugar
1 tsp Kosher Salt
1 tsp Black pepper
1 tsp Dried Parsley (not totally necessary)
* Sometimes I use Fresh Lemon juice instead of Red Wine Vinegar and I add a couple of dashes of Worcestershire Sauce. Also keep in mind that it's no longer vegetarian if you add Worcestershire. 

Boil up pasta according to package instructions, if you are making your own pasta boil according to your grandmother's instructions :). Once the pasta is cooked, strain and let cool.
Chop up all of your salad ingredients and put in to large bowl.
Add pasta when cool.
Make dressing in separate bowl, and pour over salad.
Add a big sprinkling of Parmesan cheese!
 I hope you'll try this super easy summer salad! It keeps really well in the fridge too!!!


  1. I love pasta salads they are so yummy. Id never eat a hot pasta dish cold but somehow pasta salad is perfect to eat chilled ... no idea why that is!

    1. I'm the same way, I like my soup and everything else piping hot, but for some reason pasta salad is good to me. haha Glad I'm not the only one!
      Lots of Love

  2. This looks delicious! The weather is really hot here in Washington DC, too, so I think this will be perfect...I'm going shopping for the ingredients today. May swap out the sour cream and use Greek yogurt instead. Either way, can't wait to try it!

  3. yum - this reminds me of my mom's signature pasta salad minus the creamy ingredients. i never thought to mix in sour cream or yogurt to the dressing but it sounds really good.

    i'd like to go back in time and trade you on the summers. i live in texas and it is and has been HOT for a while now. not to complain, but yuck.

  4. Sounds delish, I pinned and will be making this soon. I don't know where you live but I WISH it would rain here. Hope you are warming up fast!

  5. OK, another stupid question from me: do you eat the cauliflower and brocolli raw? I've never had it uncooked before.

    1. It is delicious raw. :)

    2. Yes definitely raw! Just make sure you chop it up into bite size pieces.
      Side Note: I wouldn't go on a date after ;) between the raw garlic and the raw broccoli it's just not a safe bet. haha
      But Yes, definitely raw.
      If you were going to add a few peas I would blanch those in hot water first!
      Hope that helps

  6. Yum! We have started having pasta salad for dinner at least once a week, but I have never thought of using tortellini for the pasta. This sounds fantastic! I will definitely be trying it.

  7. this looks delicious! i love simple, tasty, refreshing recipes like this for summer! thanks! pinned! :)

  8. Yum!! We love pasta salads. I have a recipe for a different one on my blog. It is good hot or cold!

  9. Oh yum, that looks soo good. I think I might give that to Jay as he's the same as Lee ..... needs something sufficient. I am loving this summer ..... it's finally here and wear your sunglasses because I put on my shorts today and my legs were glowing bright white. That sounds attractive :-)

  10. Made it today! Added a few things for the hubby (I cut up a rotisserie chicken and mixed in and added chopped bacon) - OVER the TOP Good!! Thanks so much!!!

  11. Ashli, I finally got around to making this salad, and I must thank you - it did not disappoint - delicious!! This one is a keeper! I should also take this opportunity to tell you how much I enjoy your blog - your always cheery demeanour and sense of fun put a smile on my face. It's a real pleasure seeing an email from MM in my inbox! :)



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