Thanks to a cooking friend for bringing this recipe to my attention! We had this the other day with some grilled meat, and sliced veggies on the side. This orzo was light, and yummy, and easy to prepare. The dried cherries add something different to the mix (and scared away my kids- but they still ate it, just minus the cherries.) This is a Giada deLaurentiis recipe, and I really love all of her pasta dishes that I've tried. I cut the recipe in half, and it still made a large amount. Also, I can't get arugala here, so I omitted that and added a lot more basil. I also used dried cherry-flavored cranberries instead of dried cherries.
adapted from Giada
1/2 pound orzo pasta
1 Tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, plus 2 Tablespoons2 cups fresh arugula (about 3 ounces) (optinonal- I didn't have this)
1/2 cup crumbled or feta cheese
1/4 cup dried cherries
1/2 ounces fresh basil leaves, torn (add more or less to taste)
1/4 cup toasted pine nuts
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the pasta and cook until tender but still firm to the bite, stirring occasionally, about 8 to 10 minutes. Drain pasta and put the pasta on a large cookie sheet. Drizzle the pasta with 1 tablespoon olive oil, toss, spread out, and set aside to cool.
2. Once the orzo is cool, transfer to a large serving bowl. Add the remaining ingredients and toss gently to combine. Serve.
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