I’ve been sharing recipes through this blog for a couple months now, and I’m also excited that readers have started sharing recipes with me! My friend Christina emailed me with several of her favorite recipes last week. As I read through them, I grew really excited because they all incorporated so many ingredients that I enjoy cooking with. It was hard to decide which one to begin with, even with the recommendations she narrowed down for starters.
Her Summer Orzo Salad caught my eye because I already had all (but one) of the ingredients in my pantry or refrigerator. At first glance, the salad sounds sweet with the juice and fruit, however the mustard, salt, and garlic add a savory element to it. The one ingredient I lacked was the raisins, so I substituted dried cranberries instead, which tasted great and added a hint of fall to an otherwise summery salad. I also only needed 1/3 cup of extra virgin olive oil.
The was absolutely delicious and very easy to make! I can’t wait to make this salad again to share with other people!
Summer Orzo Salad
1 lb. box orzo pasta
1/3 cup orange juice
½ cup dry apricots, chopped
½ cup golden raisins (or dried cranberries)
Zest from 1 lemon
1 Tbs. garlic, minced
1 tsp whole grain mustard
2 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 (4 oz.) package goat cheese, crumbled
½ cup basil, coarsely chopped
2/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
½ cup pinenuts, toasted
Cook pasta al dente, drain and rinse with cold water. Allow to cool at room temperature. While pasta is cooling, combine orange juice, apricots, raisins, lemon zest, garlic, mustard, salt, and pepper. Fruit will plump and soften slightly. Toss Fruit mixture with cooled pasta, cheese, basil, olive oil, and pine nuts. Chill for at least one hour before serving.