Tortellini Primavera

Cook’s notes: I wanted to make a tortellini salad that wasn’t weighed down by a heavy cream Alfredo sauce. This pasta dish is full of vegetables, with a light dressing. You can also add a 16-ounce bag frozen mixed vegetables (cooked) to it. Start this dish the day before so the flavors can combine overnight in the refrigerator.

Start this dish the day before so the flavors can combine overnight in the refrigerator

20 oz package cheese tortellini
12 oz bag “steam in the bag” chopped spinach
1 cup cherry tomatoes
2 green zucchini, sliced and quartered
4 yellow squash, sliced and quartered
1 cup Italian vinaigrette dressing (see below)
About 1 cup ripe olives, broken into pieces (half of a can that is about 5 oz drain wt.)

Italian Vinaigrette Dressing:
1 cup olive oil
1/2 cup red wine vinegar
2 Tablespoons minced garlic
4 teaspoons sugar
4 teaspoons Dijon mustard
2 teaspoons dried oregano
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

Prepare the tortellini according to package directions. Drain it.

While the tortellini cook, steam the spinach in the microwave according to package directions.

Saute the tomatoes, zucchini, and squash in a little olive oil until they soften.

Combine the vinaigrette dressing ingredients in a lid with a jar. Shake it well.

Combine the drained tortellini, spinach, tomatoes, zucchini, squash, and olives in a large bowl. Pour about 1 cup of the dressing over the salad, and stir well to combine (you will have dressing left).

Refrigerate overnight. Add more vinaigrette to taste the next day when serving.