Sunday, June 9, 2013

Spring Orzo Salad

With the coming of barbeque season comes the need for pasta salad. I love creating different types of salads, especially when they can go together quickly and simply. Lately I've been experimenting with creating an orzo salad we all like. This is the family-friendly recipe I've come up with for the spring events we've been going to. Older kids could be easily involved in the cooking by cutting the tomatoes and cucumbers and helping to stir. In our house we enjoy the blend of simple, sweet vegetables with a slightly tart dressing and salty feta surrounded by the great texture of orzo.

Spring Orzo Salad
This recipe makes a large bowl, great for a potluck and serves at least 8 as a single side. For smaller dinners cut the quantities in half.

1 lb. orzo (one 16 oz. box = a pound)
1/4 fresh lemon juice
1/4 white wine or rice vinegar
1/4 tsp. coarse sea salt
1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup olive oil
1 pint grape tomatoes
1/2 english cucumber
6 oz. crumbled feta cheese*
1/4 chopped fresh parsley
1/4 cup chopped fresh scallions

(Note: I have also tried this salad with an herbed, crumbled feta. This added some extra flavor and was delicious.) 

1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook pasta according to box directions. (8 to 10 minutes.)
2. While pasta cooks slice tomatoes in half and cut the cucumbers into quarters. Thinly slice the scallions and finely chop the parsley.
3. In a large mixing cup combine the lemon juice, vinegar, salt, pepper, and olive oil and mix with a small whisk to create a dressing.
4. When the orzo is cooked, drain in a colander and rinse under cold, running water. Let the colander sit in the sink for a few minutes until more of the excess water drains out.
5. Combine the cooled orzo, vegetables, herbs, dressing, and feta cheese in a large bowl. Gently stir until mixed.
6. I like to sprinkle a small amount of fresh ground pepper and salt on top.
7. Chill in the fridge for at least a half hour. Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
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