Mediterranean Orzo Salad
Used with permission from Whitecap Books
Alterations should be made to fit with your dietary needs. Please
consult with your medical team before you attempt to make this recipe.
Mediterranean Orzo Salad. Serves 6 to 8
2 cups (500 mL) orzo pasta
1/2 cup (125 mL) lemon-infused olive oil
3 Tbsp (45 mL) olive oil
15 fresh or frozen silverskin onions
or pearl onions, peeled if fresh
1/2 cup (125 mL) balsamic vinegar
One 14 oz (398 mL) can artichokes,
drained and cut into sixths
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1 tsp (5 mL) sea salt
Freshly ground Tellicherry (or black) pepper to taste
2/3 cup (160 mL) chopped kalamata olives
1/3 cup (80 mL) chopped fresh mint
1/3 cup (80 mL) chopped fresh cilantro
8 oz (250 g) feta cheese, crumbled (garnish)
- Cook the orzo in plenty of boiling salted water. Do not overcook—just cook until it’s al dente.
- Drain and give the pasta one quick rinse of cold water.
- Transfer to a serving bowl and pour the 1/2 cup (125 mL) of lemon-infused olive oil over, tossing to coat.
- This will prevent the pasta from sticking together.
- Heat the 3 Tbsp (45 mL) of olive oil in a frying pan; add the onions and fry for 5 minutes until they just begin to brown.
- Pour in the balsamic vinegar and let simmer for 5 more minutes.
- Remove the onions from the pan with a spoon and add to the orzo.
- Add the artichokes and chopped garlic to the same frying pan.
- Pan-fry for 3 to 5 minutes, seasoning with a bit of sea salt and pepper.
- Add this to the orzo mixture along with the olives and herbs.
- Stir well to combine. Garnish with the crumbled cheese and serve.
Pasta salads come and go without much fanfare. This orzo salad is by far the tastiest one I’ve eaten in a long time. Orzo is the rice-shaped pasta that cooks up tender but light—unlike “heavy” pastas, the orzo allows the flavors of the dressing to shine. O Olive Oil, from California, makes wonderful organic citrus-infused olive oils. If lemon or lime infused olive oil is not available, add 1 tsp (5 mL) lemon/lime zest to 1 cup (250 mL) extra virgin olive oil. You can use it here, and in other dressings and marinades.
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