Every once in awhile I buy fresh tortellini. And when I do it's only from Costco because #1 the price is amazing and #2 it's really good. There is a lot though so I end up freezing about two-thirds of it. I love to create new recipes using this tortellini because it's so easy to work with and it's cheese-filled so it goes with everything.
I also look for new ways to incorporate vegetables into our meals that aren't just sitting as a side dish. Not that there's anything wrong with that, it's just fun to have them involved with the main course sometimes. This pasta dish is great because you can use any vegetable you have in the fridge or the freezer. You can get really creative with this one so I encourage you to use your favorites to make this dish your own. We love broccoli and always have some in the freezer so this was the main vegetable in this version. I combined it with carrots and red pepper but you can easily use zucchini, peapods, other peppers, onions, tomatoes, or anything else you can think of! Serve it up with a salad or some crusty bread and you're good to go!
• 1 lb frozen or fresh cheese tortellini
• 2 TB oil
• 2 carrots, peeled and julienned
• 1 sm red pepper, sliced
• 2 c frozen broccoli florets (if you use fresh, you might want to blanch it for a minute or two in boiling water first)
• 1 garlic clove, minced
• 1 TB flour
• 1 TB butter
• 1/3 c milk
• 1/2 c chicken broth
• 1/4 c Parmesan cheese
• salt and pepper to taste
1. Set large pot of water to boil.
2. Heat oil in large skillet. Add carrot and pepper. Cook for about 5-7 minutes over med-low heat. Add broccoli and cook for another five minutes or until vegetables are tender but still a little crisp.
3. By this time your water should be boiling. Throw in a pinch of salt and your tortellini. Cook according to directions while you prepare the rest. (Mine cooks for about 4 minutes. Your pasta should be done just as the sauce is so you can put it directly from the boiling pot to the skillet. If it's done first, drain it and set aside so it doesn't overcook.)
4. Add garlic to other vegetables and cook for 30 seconds. Add butter and flour. Stir well. Pour in milk and stir until mixed well. Next, slowly add chicken broth, stirring continuously. Increase heat to med-high, add Parmesan and stir until melted.
5. Add pasta to the pot, season with salt and pepper, and stir gently to coat.