Monday, January 23, 2012

Spinach, Artichoke, And Tortellini Pasta Salad


This recipe has been in my to-try file for a long time. It has olives in it, which Husband doesn't like, so I haven't made for us.

Today there was a potluck at work and I decided to give it a shot. I usually make tried and tested recipes to share with my coworkers, but this sounded so wonderful and I didn't see how it was going to try out badly.

It was popular! Although it makes a large amount nearly all of it was gone at the end of the day and I have many requests for the recipe. It turned out to be a really good choice for a potluck too. I was able to make it the night before and it can sit out for several hours and still taste great.

When the salad comes together it will seem like a TON of spinach. But the spinach does wilt down as the salad sits.

Adapted from Rachel Ray

Ingredients:

1 (20 oz) Package Fresh Cheese Tortellini
8 ounces Fresh Baby Spinach, chopped
¼ Red Onion, minced
2 Tbsp Jarred Roasted Red Pepper, minced
1 (14 oz)can Baby (Small) Artichoke Hearts, quartered
¼-½ cups Pitted Kalamata Olives, chopped or whole
2 cloves Garlic, minced
2 Tbsp Red Wine Vinegar
Zest And Juice Of 1 Lemon
¼ cup Olive Oil
1 Tbsp Fresh Thyme Leaves, minced
Black Pepper To Taste
½ cup Oil-Packed Sun Dried Tomatoes, julienned - from a jar or from an olive bar
¼ cup Feta Cheese, crumbled

Directions:

Boil a large pot of water. Add tortellini and boil 4-5 minutes or until tender but still firm. Drain pasta and allow to cool. (I have always added pasta to salad while its a little warm. I think it absorbed the flavors of the salad more readily-but whatever you prefer.)

In a large bowl, add chopped spinach, onion, red pepper, artichoke hearts and olives. Toss.  Mince garlic or put the cloves through a garlic press and place in a small bowl or jar. Add red wine vinegar, lemon zest, lemon juice, olive oil, thyme, and black pepper. Whisk or shake to combine. Pour dressing over spinach. Toss well. Add pasta, tomatoes, and feta. Toss again and refrigerate until ready to serve.

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