Friday, June 10, 2016

Orzo & Roasted Veggie Salad

This is a great dish for summer, especially a potluck or barbecue.  You do have to use the oven to roast the veggies, but that's not that bad.  If you can somehow grill them, that would be even better.

Orzo & Roasted Veggie Salad
adapted from Mel's Kitchen Cafe

Lemon Vinaigrette:
3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon sugar or honey
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 teaspoon salt
Pinch of black pepper

2 cups broccoli florets in bite-size pieces (one small head)
2 medium zucchini, diced in bite-size pieces
1 red pepper, seeded, stemmed and diced
1 tablespoon olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste

8 ounces orzo pasta
1 to 2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
1/4 to 1/2 cup torn or chopped fresh basil
1/4 cup feta cheese, crumbled
1/4 to 1/2 cup toasted pine nuts or sunflower seeds

1.  For the vinaigrette, whisk together the vinegar, lemon juice, sugar or honey, olive oil, salt and pepper until emulsified and well-combined. Set aside (this can be made several days in advance and refrigerated - just whisk together again before using).

2.  Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.  Toss the vegetables with the olive oil and a couple pinches of salt and pepper. Roast in the oven for 10 minutes; give them a good stir and cook for 10-15 minutes more until tender.

3.  While the vegetables cook, bring a pot of lightly salted water to a boil and cook the orzo until al dente. Immediately after cooking and draining, add the orzo to a serving bowl, drizzle on half of the vinaigrette dressing and toss to combine.

4.  Scrape the roasted vegetables into the bowl with the orzo and give it a good stir. Add the cherry tomatoes and fresh basil and toss to combine. Add the rest of the vinaigrette and stir until everything is evenly coated. Sprinkle the feta cheese and pine nuts on top. Serve immediately at room temperature.
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