Have you ever eaten orzo pasta? What did you think about it? I was introduced to orzo a few years ago and I love it. Just to give you a little background on it, orzo , also known as rizoni, is a short cut pasta shaped like rice. Cool, huh? Looks like rice, but way fewer calories. One thing I love about orzo, is that it is very light, yet very filling. You can use it in soups or as a substitute for risotto. My favorite way to prepare it is in the form of a salad.
How to cook orzo
Throw your desired amount in a hot-pot of boiling water (add salt ) for about 7-12 minutes or until it swells and softens.
Preparing My Salad
The first rule about making a salad, is there are no rules! Just throw your favorite veggies in a bowl and add dressing! There are no limitations, just endless imagination. My best friend and my sister-in-law came to visit me for wedding fun and I made this on a whim by using whatever veggies I had left in my fridge. First, I threw in some cherry tomatoes (cut in halves), cucumbers (chopped) and some raw green beans. Fun Fact: Green Beans taste better raw, than cooked 😊. After that I sprinkled a little salt.
What else is in the fridge?
You can never go wrong with red onions! Let me tell you, onions will up the flavor game on anything. It can be yellow, white, green, purple, you name it. Raw purple onions finely chopped will add so much flavor to a salad, because of the hinted sweetness behind it.
I love how colorful my it is! The purples, reds and greens indicate the more colorful, the healthier! Now, let’s get on to the rest of the ingredients. I wanted some type of protein so I added…
I added turkey pieces and shrimp to my salad. I seasoned my shrimp with salt, black pepper, cayenne pepper, oregano, and Worcestershire sauce and sautéed them. For the vegans and vegetarians, you can skip this part, however, if you’re not, this gives an extra bite.
I try to make my own dressings these days because they are healthier and I know exactly what I’m eating. Don’t get me wrong, I love my salad dressings from ranch, balsamic, Caesar, French, feta, etc.! If you are not one to experiment with making your own, Italian dressing or a balsamic dressing will do the trick.
Ingredients: Extra Virgin Olive Oil, salt, black pepper, cayenne pepper, white vinegar (red wine vinegar is better but I was out!), lime juice and a tad of garlic salt.
Once you mix everything together, this is what you have. Where I come from, measurements are nonexistent in my family. I literally learn to eyeball everything! Funny, here I am today, I will learn how to cook new items based on eyeballing the amount of ingredients I need. The piece ingredient to add is parmesan cheese! I am a sucker for cheese and anyone will tell you I am a mouse. This is a great side dish or a substitute for just your normal salad and is something you can take with you to work! All of the flavors work together to create a pretty good salad and I love CRUNCH in my salad. Please try this yourself and don’t be afraid to make it your own by trying different veggies.