Anyone else feeling the winter doldrums? I long for green trees and sunlight past 5:30 pm. And the abundant produce that comes with summer– fresh corn, vine ripened tomatoes and everything else that’s light and bright.
I remember tasting this lovely orzo salad last summer when a co-worker (Hi, Karmen!) brought some to share. I know it’s not seasonally appropriate to have corn on the cob or even (greenhouse grown?) tomatoes, but I don’t care. The heart wants what the heart wants and I wanted this yummy summery orzo salad.
This salad can easily turn into a complete meal with the addition of a can of rinsed black beans or a couple handfuls of shredded leftover (or rotisserie) chicken or some sauteed shrimp. Or just have it as the recipe is below. Make it today for a taste of summer!
karmen’s orzo salad
1/2 pound orzo pasta
2-3 ears corn on the cob, or 8 ounces frozen corn
1/2 red onion, small dice
1 pint grape tomatoes, halved
1/2 cup cilantro, minced
Zest of one lime
1/3 cup fresh lime juice (2 limes)
2 tablespoons honey or agave nectar
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
Salt and pepper
1 avocado, diced, for serving
Bring a medium pot of salted water to a boil for the orzo pasta. Cook pasta according to the package directions, drain and rinse briefly with cold water to bring the temperature down. Meanwhile, grill the corn on the cob or saute the frozen corn in a dry skillet. If using corn on the cob, cut off the kernels and put in a large mixing bowl. Add the cooked orzo, red onion, tomatoes, and cilantro and stir to combine. In a small bowl or measuring cup, make the dressing by combining the lime zest and juice, honey or agave, olive oil, rice wine vinegar, 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Taste for seasoning and add more lime/honey/oil/vinegar/salt and pepper as you prefer. Pour the dressing over the orzo and vegetables a little at a time and stir to thoroughly combine. Let sit in the fridge for at least one hour (up to overnight) for the flavors to marry. Before serving, check once more for seasoning and give everything a toss and gently stir in the diced avocado.