Food & Drink

Cheese Tortellini Pasta Salad & Parmesan Dressing

From Mom’s Best Crowd-Pleasers comes one of SIX menu posts designed to feed your family what they love, from Baby to Grandparents (and even the Dog!). See the full menu here!

According to author Andrea Chesman, “Tortellini salads disappear faster from buffet tables than all other salads.” Try this one out and see if she’s right!

Cheese Tortellini Pasta Salad

Serves 6 to 8

  • 40 ounces fresh or frozen (not dried) cheese tortellini, preferably multicolored
  • ¾ cup plus 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 8 sun-dried tomatoes
  • 1 shallot, peeled
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled
  • ½ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • ¼ cup red wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • ½ teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 red bell pepper, cut into matchsticks
  • 1 green bell pepper, cut into matchsticks
  • 1 cup pitted black olives, such as kalamata
  • 10–20 basil leaves, finely sliced
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1. Cook the tortellini in plenty of boiling salted water until just al dente. Drain. Transfer to a large bowl, toss with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil, and refrigerate.

2. Cover the sun-dried tomatoes with boiling water and set aside to plump for 10 minutes. Drain well and thinly slice.

3. To make the dressing, combine the shallot and garlic in a blender and finely chop. Add the Parmesan, vinegar, oregano, and mustard, and process until well blended. Scrape down the blender container. With the motor running, slowly add the remaining ¾ cup oil and continue to process until well blended.

4. About 15 minutes before serving, combine the sun-dried tomatoes, bell peppers, olives, and basil with the tortellini. Add the dressing and toss carefully. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

5. Let the salad stand for about 15 minutes to blend the flavors before serving.

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