Monday, September 6, 2010

Orzo and Cannellini Bean Salad

Here's a super simple (uh-oh, I sound like Sandra Lee from the Food Network - sorry 'bout that...) recipe for a pasta salad using cherry tomatoes and orzo pasta with fresh mozzarella and basil. The beauty of it is you can tweak it as much as you like - skip the beans, or replace with another variety, try diced provolone instead of mozzarella, or no cheese at all. The vinaigrette is equally flexible - try Balsamic vinegar for a stronger flavor, you get the idea...

  • 3/4 box Orzo pasta
  • 1 14oz. can cannellini (white) beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes, sliced into halves
  • 1 8 oz. container of Fresh Mozzarella "Pearls" (small ball-shaped pieces)
  • 1/2 cup of fresh basil chiffonade (basil chopped into small shreds)

 Vinaigrette: combine all ingredients, combine thoroughly with whisk
  • 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/3 cup red wine vinegar
  • juice of one lemon
  • zest of one lemon
  • salt & pepper
  • 1 tbsp. Italian Seasoning (oregano, basil, garlic powder)
To Make:
  1. Cook pasta, drain, rinse with cool water, drain again, set aside
  2. In large bowl combine beans, tomatoes, and mozzarella
  3. Add orzo, toss gently
  4. Add vinaigrette, making sure salad is well coated
  5. Toss in the fresh basil chiffonade, chill.
Makes 8 servings.

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