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Autumn Tortellini & Prosciutto Salad

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INGREDIENTS

Serves 4 – 6
1 (10-ounce) package fresh cheese tortellini (can cook ahead of time, then cool and store in refrigerator for up to 4 days)
1/2 C toasted walnuts
1/2 C dried cherries
6 slices prosciutto
6 ounces mixed salad greens
Balsamic Vinaigrette

INSTRUCTIONS

Bring a pot of water to a boil over high heat. Add a teaspoon of salt and the tortellini, and cook until the tortellini float to the surface and are tender, 6 to 8 minutes. Drain and set aside.

Heat the oven to 350°F. Place the walnuts on a baking sheet and toast until fragrant and beginning to brown, 5 to 7 minutes. Watch carefully, taking care not to burn them. Transfer to a cutting board and cool. Roughly chop walnuts.

Roughly chop the dried cherries. Tear or cut the pieces of prosciutto into long strands.

Combine the cooled tortellini, dried cherries, prosciutto, and salad greens in a bowl. Toss with vinaigrette to coat — start with 2 tablespoons and add more to taste. Divide the salad between bowls or plates and sprinkle walnuts on top. Enjoy!

Chef’s tip:
To enjoy this delightful salad at an Autumn picnic or to take to the office, follow these simple make ahead steps. Combine the tortellini, cherries, and prosciutto in a re-sealable container and toss with a tablespoon or two of balsamic vinaigrette (this prevents the ingredients from sticking together). Place the greens and walnuts in a separate container. When ready to eat, toss or shake the two together (add an additional tablespoon or two of balsamic vinaigrette if you like).
Bon Appetit!

Bettina Tolin is a graduate of Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts in Austin Texas. She has cooked in the kitchens of the Ritz-Carlton Amelia Island, Florida. She is currently the Executive Chef and General Manager at Marcello’s Italian Restaurant and Bar in Port Isabel, Texas.
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