Sunday, July 19, 2009

Orzo Salad

I am the last person to deny the world more sweets, but once in a while I crave a delicious savory dish, vegetarian of course.

My Mom would agree with me, that after a long hectic day, nothing is more relaxing and satisfying as watching the Food Network for a show or two. Although I regret to have fallen into the national obsession with Giada De Laurentis, no one can deny that her recipes are chic in a casual, understated sort of way. Take the Orzo Salad for instance. In an episode based around alfresco dining, the salad represents the truly great, yet simple, way in which modern cooking can be fast, easy and divine. In this recipe a smaller amount of olive oil was used for a less "wet" texture.

My Mom is the guest chef for this post, so she takes all the credit for making the Orzo Salad!

Orzo Salad

4 cups chicken, (or vegetable!) broth

1 1/2 cups orzo

1 can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed

1 1/2 cups of grape tomatoes, halved

3/4 cup finely chopped red onion

1/2 cup chopped fresh basil leaves

1/4 cup chopped mint leaves

3/4 cup red wine vinaigrette

Red Wine Vinaigrette

1/2 cup red wine vinegar

1/4 cup fresh lemon juice

2 teaspoons honey

2 teaspoons salt

3/4 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper

1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

Bring the broth to a boil over high heat- stir in the orzo. Cover partially and cook until tender, around 7 minutes. Drain orzo an transfer to large bowl. Toss orzo with beans, tomatoes, onion, basil, mint, and enough vinaigrette to coat. Season with salt and pepper.
Serve hot or cold, preferably outside.

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