Mediterranean Orzo Salad
Our Mediterranean Orzo Salad is fresh, light and tasty salad. Perfect for the Summer, or anytime you want a Greek or Mediterranean flair for your dinner menu. Our Mediterranean Seasoning in the dressing brings together all the flavors together. We use enough Kalamata olives and feta cheese to make sure you pick up their distinctive flavors, but not so much to overpower the dish. The same is with the Toasted Pine Nuts, Marinated Artichoke Hearts and the other ingredients. The dressing is the key since the herbs and lemon juice add that Greek edge without taking over the salad.
What we didn’t add, but you can, was about a cup of garbanzo beans. There are some smaller, sweeter varieties on the market which we like, but if you can’t find them, we feel other varieties might overpower the flavor balance we were out to create.
This Mediterranean Orzo Salad is a delicious compliment to Greek Souvlaki, Grilled Lemon Chicken or even a simple pizza. Add some grilled chicken slices and you have a compete dinner salad. We hope you enjoy it as much as we do.
8 Ounces Uncooked Orzo Pasta
3 Tablespoons Red Onions, Finely Chopped
½ Cup Pitted Kalamata Olives, Chopped
½ Cup (About a 6 Ounce Jar) Marinated Artichoke Hearts, Chopped Coarse
1 Cup Cherry Tomatoes, Quartered
1 Cup Crumbled Feta Cheese
¼ Cup Pine Nuts, Toasted
Prepare dressing first. In a small mixing bowl, add the olive oil, lemon juice, Mediterranean Seasoning, salt and pepper. Whisk well to combine. Set aside.
Prepare all the other ingredients. To toast the pine nuts, place in a small skillet over medium heat. Stir constantly while toasting to prevent them from burning. When lightly golden brown, turn off heat and transfer to a small bowl to cool.
Prepare the orzo, in a medium to large pot according to the package instructions. Cook for about 7 minutes until al dente. Stir occasionally. Don’t overcook or it will be too soft and mushy. The orzo must be firm but tender. Drain well in a colander, but do not rinse. Pour into a large mixing bowl. Fluff with a fork to separate the orzo grains.
Re-whisk the dressing and pour over the orzo. Stir to mix thoroughly and to keep the orzo separated. Let cool a bit. You can even place in the refrigerator to cool faster.
Add the other ingredients, Use a large spoon combine well. Cover and refrigerate until serving time.