Here we are, the week after the 4th of July, wondering how it’s already July and the summer is half over. I know I am. Well cheer up, there is still lots of summer to enjoy and now you have a great pasta salad recipe to try out that isn’t like a normal pasta salad. I love orzo and Whole Foods sells a really great orzo salad that costs about an arm and a leg just for a small amount so I like to make this instead. This is a great during the week lunch recipe as it gets better the longer all the flavors have time to mix together in the fridge. Disclaimer: it is hard not to keep going back for more, so stay strong and away from the fridge if you want to have leftovers!
3 tablespoons olive oil, 1 tablespoon for the pasta water, 2 tablespoons for the dressing
2 cups of orzo
1 garlic clove, minced
juice of 1 lemon
half of a rotisserie chicken, chopped up
1 cup of basil, chiffonade style (how to chiffonade: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E389S8YGRGk)
1 cup of spinach, chiffonade style
quarter of a medium sized red onion, chopped
1. Cook orzo
2. While orzo is cooking, take rotisserie chicken (I just buy the pieces rather than an entire one) and cut into small cubes or however you find easiest to cut
3. Drain orzo but leave a little bit of pasta water in with the orzo.
4. Put olive oil, garlic, salt, pepper, lemon juice, and basil into a large mixing bowl. Whisk until combined.
5. Mix orzo, chicken, spinach, red onion, and dressing together.
6. Taste and see if salt or pepper needs to be added.
7. You can eat it immediately or stick in the fridge for a few hours. I like it both ways.
Notes: can always be made without chicken if you want it to be vegetarian or if you want to get super fancy you can roast your garlic before blending it.