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Orzo Salad, Easy And Sophisticated

February 12, 2011

A friend shared this stunning side dish at a recent potluck and I absolutely had to ask if I could pass it along!  Thank you M&R for bringing Orzo Salad into my life!  You cannot go wrong serving this dish to any variety of choosy guests.  It is vegetarian, unique, simple and tasty.

Orzo Salad is my new favorite salad.  I make it almost every week and portion it out into containers for my lunches as it keeps very well.  I leave out the feta and exchange the pine nuts for sunflower seeds to make the recipe as inexpensive as possible when preparing it just for myself.  I also use double the nuts or seeds to increase the protein.

Ingredients:

2 cups dry orzo pasta: I can only manage to find this in the specialty section of the grocery store, not the pasta section for some reason.  Don’t worry, it is still very inexpensive even when found in the specialty section, usually $1.29.

2 tbsps olive oil: This didn’t make it into the photo unfortunately.

2 cups baby spinach

12-15 fresh basil leaves

1/2 cup dried cranberries

1/4 cup pine nuts

Juice of one lemon

Prepare the orzo as you would any pasta.  Boil a large pot of water.  Add the dry orzo pasta.  Boil until tender but still firm to the bite, about 10 minutes.

Then strain the cooked pasta and add back to the pot.  Add 2 tbsps olive oil and stir to coat pasta so it doesn’t stick together later.  Lay the orzo pasta on a wax paper covered cookie sheet and place in the refrigerator to cool.

Place all ingredients, including cooled orzo pasta in a large bowl.  Squeeze with juice of one lemon.  Stir.

Serve as a main for lunch or side dish for dinner. Jump up.

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From → Side Dishes

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