Sunday, August 8, 2010

Mom always knows best!

I am absolutely in love with this orzo salad. My mom makes it all the time throughout the hot months of the year (you know, like 88% of the time in Florida?) She found the recipe on Epicurious a while back but adapted it to reduce the fat. This is seriously one of my all-time favorite recipes. It is perfect to snack on during the day, eat for lunch & eat for dinner. The recipe says to serve at room-temperature but I enjoy it straight out of the fridge as well. Let me know if any of you makes this recipe & what you think about it :)

Orzo with Tomatoes, Basil, Feta, Red Onion & Chickpeas
Adapted from Epicurious

Orzo Ingredients:
1 lb orzo
6 cups chicken broth (optional, see below)
2 cups red and yellow teardrop or grape tomatoes, halved
1 7-ounce package feta cheese, cut into 1/2-inch cubes (about 1 1/2 cups)
1 cup chopped fresh basil
1 cup chopped red onion
1/2 cup pine nuts, toasted
1 can chickpeas (rinsed & drained)

Vinaigrette Ingredients
1/8 cup red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon honey
1/4 cup olive oil

Whisk vinegar, lemon juice and honey together in a small bowl. Gradually whisk in olive oil. Season with salt & pepper and then cover and place in fridge.

First, boil orzo in either 6 cups of chicken broth or 6 cups of salted water. (I didn't have any chicken broth at home and didn't really feel like buying it at the store so I used water instead. Chicken broth gives the orzo a bit more flavor than water does but it isn't a huge difference.) Once the broth or water is boiling stir in orzo, reduce heat to medium, cover partially, and boil until tender but still firm to bite, stirring occasionally. Drain. Transfer to large wide bowl, tossing frequently until cool. Chop up basil, tomatoes and onions.

Mix tomatoes, feta, basil, and onions and chickpeas into orzo. Add vinaigrette; toss to coat. Season with salt and pepper. Add pine nuts; toss. Serve at room temperature.

ENJOY!! :)

xox, Jen

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