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Monday, May 24, 2010

Summer Orzo Salad


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So, I've been a little out of it lately as far as cooking and updating things around here and I apologize.  To be honest, I really haven't done too much cooking lately.  But, it was definitely well overdue and I decided to get out of my rut, concoct a weekly menu for this week and do a little grocery shopping to make it all happen! 

As you know, we recently made these Boneless Wings and they went over tremendously well with the online community!  I've had lots of emails and comments and views regarding this recipe and it has seemed to be quite the pleaser all over.  Why wouldn't it be?  Boneless wings are great and these are super simple and delicious, giving Buffalo Wild Wings a run for their money!  It's definitely one of Chris' favorite foods and now is definitely one of his favorite meals to make.  I like making them too because it's a team effort when these bad boys go down in our house and we work really well together in the kitchen when we're not getting in each other's way!

So Boneless Wings were on the menu, again, for this past weekend.  When we make them, I usually like to accompany them with lighter side dishes since the wings are typically a little more heavy and spicy in flavor (depending on the sauce you use...we like ours spicy).  Last time I made this Black Eyed Pea & Ham Salad to go with them and while it was really tasty, I wanted to do something different.  I wanted to do a summer pasta salad of some sort.  I came across this recipe a while ago, in Everyday with Rachael Ray.  It really inspired this dish, but I adapted it quite a bit that the changes really make it stand on it's own as an entree too.

While the original recipe calls for rotini, I substituted in orzo for a light and fun twist.  In addition, I added in fresh squash and panko bread crumbs for additional flavor and textures.  This is such a light and summer dish and is great served warm or cold.  It's versatility and combination of flavors really make it hearty but not heavy.  A little grilled chicken or shrimp mixed in could go a long way!  I don't recall his exact words, but Chris really enjoyed it (so much that I caught him sneaking a helping or two out of the container in the fridge)!  This is definitely a dish we'll be eating more often and it's also great for picnics, BBQ's and summer parties alike!


Summer Orzo Salad

Ingredients
1 lb. Orzo
2 Tbsp. Olive Oil
2 cloves Garlic, minced
3/4 cup Panko Crumbs
3 Tbsp. Fresh Basil, chopped
2 cups Swiss Cheese, shredded
1 Med. Zucchini, sliced thinly
1 Med. Yellow Squash, sliced thinly
1 1/2 cups Corn (fresh or frozen)
Salt
Pepper

Directions
Add orzo to salted, boiling water and cook until al dente (about 10 minutes).  Meanwhile, in a large pan, heat olive oil over med-high heat.  Add in the garlic, zucchini and squash; sautee until tender (about 5 minutes).  In a small pan, toast panko crumbs over medium heat and let cool.

Drain orzo and return to pan.  Toss together the zucchini and squash mixture with the orzo.  Add in the corn; mix well.  Add in 1 1/2 cups of Swiss Cheese to the mixture and mix until cheese melts in.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.

To the panko crumbs, add the remaining cheese and basil; toss to combine.  Place orzo into a serving bowl and top with panko mixture.  Serve warm or cool.

Yields: 4-6 Servings
Source: Inspired by Everyday with Rachael Ray

1 comments:

themilkmanswife on May 24, 2010 at 8:57 PM said...

Mmmm! This looks so delicious. Great twist on your everyday pasta salad!

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