There are two things I’m really into these days – easy, healthy recipes and giving back to my community. I know, those two don’t seem very related, but stick with me. When I got an email from Ronald McDonald House Charities of Richmond asking me to help promote their holiday season Southern Living cookbook in partnership with Dillards, I immediately answered yes and married together these two passions of mine. As I flipped through the amazing recipes in the book, I quickly settled on the Tortellini Caprese Bites as a “must try.” This recipe could not possibly be any easier. I whipped it up in about 5 minutes and since I wasn’t headed to a holiday party that particular afternoon, I modified it a bit to make a nice little Caprese Tortellini Salad that seriously hit the spot for a day of work at home.
Caprese Tortellini Salad
Follow the recipe on page 26 of the Southern Living Christmas Cookbook for Tortellini Caprese Bites.
- 1 9oz. package refrigerated cheese-filled tortellini
- 3 cups halved grape tomatoes
- 3 8oz. containers fresh small mozzarella cheese balls
- 60 6-inch wooden skewers
- Basil Vinaigrette
- Prepare tortellini according to package directions. Rinse under cold running water.
- Thread 1 tomato half, 1 cheese ball, another tomato half and 1 tortellini onto each skewer. Place skewers in a 13×9-inch baking dish.
- Pour Basil Vinaigrette over skewers, turning to coat.
- Cover and chill 2 hours. Add salt and pepper to taste.
- 1/2 cup white balsamic vinegar
- 1 tsp. kosher salt
- 2/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 6 tbsp. chopped fresh basil
- Whisk together vinegar and salt until blended.
- Gradually add oil in a slow, steady stream, whisking constantly until smooth.
- Stir in basil and black pepper to taste.
How I modified the recipe to make a salad instead:
- Shredded parmesan cheese
- Sweet sausage tortellini
- Oat bran and sesame seed salad toppers
I used sweet sausage tortellini because it’s what I happened to have on hand. Instead of threading the ingredients on skewers, I just tossed all items in a big bowl along with the Basil Vinaigrette. Then I served it up in bowls, sprinkled with a bit of shredded parmesan on top and some oat bran and sesame seed salad toppers to give it some crunch. YUM!
The best part about this Southern Living cookbook (apart from the fact that all proceeds go to support families in need!) is that it’s actually two books in one! With over 280 pages, 200 recipes and decorating tips, on one side you get the holiday-themed Christmas cookbook and a simple flip of the book reveals the second treat, Year-Round Celebrations. I have ear-marked tons of pages with easy, must try recipes and know this cookbook will be one I come back to time and time again. Knowing that a simple $10 purchase will help support such a notable cause and will bless my own family with lots of tasty treats…that’s the easiest $10 you could ever spend. Remember, you can order online if you can’t get to the Richmond locations selling the book in person.
There’s also a Ronald McDonald House Charities of Norfolk a little bit closer to home that is always seeking support for the families they serve if you’d like to give back right here in Hampton Roads.
Be sure to follow along with Ronald McDonald House Charities of Richmond by clicking the links below!