alex's mom, Judy, first made me this salad a couple years ago. it has been one of my favorite meals ever since. i was a bit unsure of the combination of pasta and lettuce - but let me assure you it works!
this salad is the perfect early fall dinner. i am still craving the light dinners of summer but i am ready for the comforting flavors of fall. the rich buttery pecans give a wonderful crunch, the cranberries have just the right tartness, the creamy sharp feta is an indulgence and this balsamic vinaigrette is one of my favorites. i use white balsamic vinegar in addition to the regular balsamic because i think it adds a bright flavor. the cheese filled tortellini is the perfect foundation for all these flavors.
you need to do me one favor if you make this salad - be sure to get a bit of everything on your fork with each bite - the combination of all the ingredients is mind blowing! i hope you enjoy.
i didn't put down any specific measurements - with exception of the vinaigrette. i don't measure salad - i just toss handfuls of ingredients into in the bowl.tortellini salad with cranberries, pecans and feta
inspired by alex's mom Judy
romaine lettuce and/or mixed greens - torn into bite size pieces
tortellini - cooked per package instructions and cooled
feta cheese - crumbled
pecans - toasted in a dry pan until just slightly browned
tomatoes - Judy also puts tomatoes in the salad - i sometimes do and sometimes don't. it is up to you.balsamic vinaigrette
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons light brown sugar
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 clove of garlic - made into paste with microplane
6-7 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
combine vinegars, brown sugar, lemon juice, garlic, salt and pepper in bowl. mix well. slowly stream in olive oil while whisking. i then transfer it into a small jar so i can shake it up before pouring on the salad.
combine lettuce, tortellini, pecans and cranberries in a large bowl. toss to mix. pour vinaigrette over salad. sprinkle with feta cheese and serve.
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