Before the advent of Pinterest and the widespread information sharing of the internet, people learned their recipes from Betty Crocker and Better Homes cookbooks, neighborhood women that shared family favorite recipes (usually casseroles or something with Velveeta), and recipe cards that sat in little boxes in your mother’s pantry.
In the ‘90s I remember every family event we went to always had some form of crunchy ramen noodle salad, little smokies in bbq sauce, a veggie platter, and of course a cold pasta salad. I love to close my eyes and transport myself back to that place as a child. Eating smokies and cold pasta and washing it down with a Coca-Cola (or by the looks of things, a vintage Mountain Dew).
These simple times give me the happiest memories. I picture myself surrounded by my family eating the classic staples that defined growing up in the ‘90s. After our meals, my sisters and I would retire to the basement, and play Nintendo or Atari – whichever was available. Our parents would sit upstairs and eat dessert with coffee. I like to picture this scenario in the summer, with a window cracked and lightning bugs glowing right outside. Heaven.
Today’s recipe pays homage to the cold pasta salads of yesteryear and gives them a modern and “deconstructed” update that makes them easy finger foods for your events in the 21st century. With wedding and baby shower season right around the corner, it’s nice to have a few fanciful finger-foods to pick and choose from that you can whip together in a snap and use to share and create new memories.
For this recipe you need this lovely line-up:
Hard Salami, Cheese Tortellini, Tomatoes, Canned Artichoke Hearts, Black Olives, Mozzarella Pearls, Pesto, Toothpicks and not pictured: Olive Oil, Salt & Pepper.
Boil the cheese tortellini until al dente. I boiled in salted water for a little extra taste.
While the tortellini is boiling, halve the tomatoes and halve the artichoke hearts.
Halve and quarter your salami
drain the tortellini and rinse with cool water to stop the cooking process.
Dry off the tortellini and mix the tortellini noodles with pesto and also mix the pesto with the mozzarella.
After you mix the pesto with the cheese and tortellini, begin your assembly process. I used small toothpicks and started the skewer with a halved artichoke heart, a rolled piece of salami, an olive OR a tomato (I alternated between skewers), a tortellini, and a mozzarella pearl and repeat! This batch made about 70 skewers – perfect for a crowd! Chill in the fridge until it is time to serve. Before serving drizzle with olive oil, sea salt, and pepper. You can also use larger bamboo skewers and add extra layers of ingredients!
- Hard Salami
- Mozzarella Pearls
- Pesto sauce
- Cheese Tortellini
- Grape Tomatoes
- Black Olives
- Canned Artichoke Hearts
- Olive Oil
- Salt & Pepper
- Toothpicks or bamboo skewers
- Set up your skewer station and pre-cut, cook, and prepare all your ingredients for easy assembly.
- Slide the artichoke heart on the skewer, followed by rolled salami, a tomato / black olive, a tortellini, and a mozzarella pearl.
- Chill in fridge until time to serve.
- Before serving, drizzle skewers with olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt and pepper.