Friday, May 14, 2010

orzo pasta salad plus a swollen eye

This might be one of my more unique blog titles. I like when my blog posts have unique titles that (I would imagine) no one else has used before. If someone else has written a post before called "orzo pasta salad plus a swollen eye", I need to know.

Anyhow....

Earlier this week I shared our menu for the week, and a few of you asked about my orzo pasta salad. I didn't share a link because this was a recipe I sort of made up in my head as I planned my meals for this week. I rarely create my own recipes, but sometimes I do. And sometimes, those recipes that I come up with on my own turn out to be incredible. This would be one of those times.

Let's begin with a box of orzo pasta. I bought the cheap stuff at my grocery store. No need to buy the fancy pants pasta.


Cook according directions on the box. While you've got this cooking, make your lemon dressing. I used this one by Pioneer Woman, but halved it. All you really need are olive oil, a lemon, paprika, garlic, and salt and pepper to taste. Easy peasy. She says to let it sit for 24 hours. I didn't do that. Oops. My sat for about thirty minutes and it was fine.


When dressing is done, move on to your tomatoes (they really make the meal if you ask me). I started by covering a cookie tray with foil. I hate cooking clean up, therefore, I love some aluminum foil.


Then take out your heirloom tomatoes...


And spread them all over your foil covered cookie sheet, drizzle with extra virgin olive oil, and sprinkle with garlic powder.


Stick them in the broiler for about 10 minutes or until they look a little brown and mushy. That's when they're perfect.


Around this time, your pasta should be done and drained. Put it in a big bowl and mix in the lemon dressing.


And then throw your tomatoes in there...


Now let's add in the artichokes. I bought these marinated artichoke hearts, but I wouldn't say that's necessary. Any old artichoke hearts would work.


Then throw in some goat cheese. I did about 1/3 of this block (would you call that ablock or a chunk?)


You're probably thinking at this in point in the post that I do a lot of shopping at Trader Joe's. You would be right. I don't know how I ever cooked before they came to my city.

Back to the pasta. Mix it all up...


And serve! We had our pasta salad with this grilled chicken with rustic mustard cream.


The whole meal was delicious. The chicken and the pasta were so yummy! And the pasta salad was light and refreshing. The lemon and the tangy tomatoes were a fabulous combination.

As we were eating, I noticed that the Dijon mustard in the chicken recipe sure had a kick to it. At one point I may have screamed and begged J for some water. But it really was yummy! However, half way through my meal, my right eye began to swell a little and a red circle began to form around it. Sort of looked like I had been punched in the face...


Sad Rachel :(

But this won't stop me. The entire meal was too delicious to not make again. I think I'll just hold back on the mustard next time!

11 comments:

  1. I've only had orzo pasta salad one other time, and loved it! Your recipe looks easy and delicious, I'll definitely have to give it a try!!
    That chicken recipe sound great too!

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  2. You're makin me hungry! Looks like a great dinner.

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  3. Oh my word, looks AMAZING!!!!!! Minus the swollen eye!!! I could totally make this. Thanks for sharing!!

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  4. It looks delicious and I cannot wait to try it! I also have no idea how I survived without a Trader Joe's for so many years. It is amazing!

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  5. oh yum. Except goat's cheese, I dont like that . . . and swollen eyes, I dont like those either :-) but I'm always so impressed with your cooking creations!

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  6. My girlfriend served this exact meal at our book club, and it was SOOOO divine!!!! I was super impressed and loved it. By the way, I just fell in love with Trader Joe's and that's an entirely new post in itself. I cannot believe the fun shopping that takes place there, and everything is actually cheaper than the Kroger, QFC, Safeway, etc!

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  7. Oh my stars, that looks incredible!!! I need some now!

    Hope your poor eye feels better!!

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  8. I'm wondering if our coffee date should just take place at TJs? I love that store.

    I love me some orzo, too.

    I am going to have to try out your recipe. I found another great recipe for orzo, too...super easy & quite delicious and especially good if you've got some fresh basil in your garden:

    http://www.lifeofabusywife.com/2009/07/greatness-that-is-orzo.html

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  9. I'm wondering if our coffee date should just take place at TJs? I love that store.

    I love me some orzo, too.

    I am going to have to try out your recipe. I found another great recipe for orzo, too...super easy & quite delicious and especially good if you've got some fresh basil in your garden:

    http://www.lifeofabusywife.com/2009/07/greatness-that-is-orzo.html

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  10. mmmmmmm, that looks so yummy!! so glad you posted it! and your poor eye, maybe some different mustard next time ;) hope it's all better! and i wish we had a trader joes close to us!!

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  11. I looooove orzo. That dish looks amazing!

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