When the weather is hot there are few things I love as much as a big pasta salad chilling in the refrigerator. Serve it for lunches or simple summer dinners or better yet, pack it up for a party. This particular combination is one of my favorites. Fresh basil, tomatoes and mozzarella simply shout summer. For an added twist, any variety of prepared tortellini works as a great base. Use a vegetable or cheese-stuffed tortellini if there will be vegetarians in the crowd or a meat-stuffed variety for a heartier dish. However you serve it, this fresh, satisfying pasta salad is sure to be a hit.
Tortellini Pasta Salad with Tomato, Basil and Mozzarella
- 1 lb frozen tortellini
- 1 Tbsp white wine vinegar
- 2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
- 2 tsp honey
- ½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 3 cups cherry tomatoes, quartered
- 1 (8 oz) container mozzarella pearls, drained (or 8 oz fresh mozzarella, chopped)
- 15 leaves fresh basil, thinly sliced
- salt and pepper, to taste
Bring a large saucepan of salted water to boil. Add the tortellini and cook according to package directions (typically until they float). Drain, rinse, and allow to cool.
To make the vinaigrette, in a small bowl, whisk together the white wine vinegar, lemon juice, and honey. Add the olive oil in a steady stream, whisking as you go.
In a large serving bowl, combine the tortellini, tomatoes, mozzarella, and basil. Drizzle the vinaigrette over the salad and toss lightly to combine. Add salt and pepper, to taste. Refrigerate for up to 24 hours before serving.
About the Author
Jessica Smith is a food and travel writer who blogs at InquiringChef.com. A Kansas City native, she now spends her days discovering new food stories in Thailand, where she lives with her husband, Frank.