One of my childhood friends moved to Italy 20 years ago. During a recent visit to see her, I enjoyed a scrumptious salad made with tortellini and fresh vegetables. I fell in love with the dish and have been trying to recreate ever since. How'd I do? —Kelly Mapes, Fort Collins, Colorado
Here's a simple recipe for lettuce wraps that's a nutritious option for a luncheon or dinner party. For fun, serve the filling on a platter with lettuce leaves on the side, and let your guests wrap their own. —Mary Beth Vultee, Ocean Beach, North Carolina
"A variation of this recipe was originally served as a side dish at a popular French restaurant," says Eileen Herr from Indianapolis, Indiana. "I added a few more ingredients to make it a cool and hearty meal. The recipe is very adaptable—it's also delicious with chicken and snow peas."
Cool cucumber and avocado combine with spicy marinated steak to create a fun and tasty balance of flavors your guests will love. If the spice is too much, remove the cayenne and red pepper flakes from the avocado mixture.—Ning Watson of San Diego, California
This tangy-sweet dressing is perfect for large gatherings. Keep it warm in a crockpot or slow-cooker. I like serving it over dandelion or spinach salad, and I also like it mixed in with mashed potatoes. Just a little gives a lot of flavor.
"I adapted this great-tasting wholesome salad from another recipe," notes Marge Chapko from Eau Claire, Wisconsin. "I serve it to family , friends and even people who don't like barley#151;and they end up asking for the recipe. I sometimes turn it into a main dish by adding leftover meat."