Well, here I am. I'm back and caught up, or maybe I should say, more caught up... and over the next several days I will be showing you photos of things I have done and recipes I have made. I spent my days visiting friends, sitting on the patio with friends, baking, cooking, and working in the garden (photos of the garden and patio will be posted this week along with an answer to Julia of Mélanger's question, "Wow, what were you doing for 9 hours?").
I celebrated my 56th birthday on Friday, and dined on the patio alone at noon (Really, it was fine... I don't mind being alone. I usually have a stack of magazines in hand and can spend hours pouring over the pages. And, I was later joined by two very close friends for a celebratory glass of wine.) It was a very tastey lunch. This is a recipe for a pasta salad I clipped from somewhere about 25 years ago. It makes a big bowlful, so consider this salad if you're feeding a lot of people (or, if you like eating the same meal over and over and over for several days). Don't be put off by all of the olive oil that is called for in this recipe. You will not use all of the vinaigrette.
TORTELLINI SALAD with RED WINE VINAIGRETTE
Red Wine Vinaigrette:
• 3 tablespoons Dijon mustard
• 1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
• salt and freshly ground black pepper
• 1 1/2 cups extra-virgin olive oil
• 3 cloves of garlic, peeled and lightly crushed
• 6 quarts water
• 1 1/2 tablespoon salt
• 1 1/2 pounds cheese-filled tortellini
• 1/2 cup chopped red onion
• 3/4 cup chopped Italian parsley
• 1 red bell pepper, diced
• 1 cup large black olives, sliced
• 1/4 pound thinly sliced salami, julienned
1. To make the vinaigrette, whisk mustard and vinegar in a small bowl. Season with salt and pepper. Slowly add olive oil while whisking. Add the garlic and let vinaigrette stand at room temperature at least an hour. Remove the garlic, adjust seasoning, and whisk again before using.
2. To make the salad, bring the water to a boil. Stir in salt and tortellini and cook until tender. Pour into a colander to drain, shaking well to remove all of the water.
3. In a large bowl, combine hot tortellini, onion, parsley and 1 cup of the vinaigrette. When cool, add the additional ingredients and more vinaigrette if necessary. Toss before serving.