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Orzo and tomato salad

Pasta salads tend to be boring, and in India, loaded with mayo making them completely inedible. Here is a fresh and bright version of a healthy pasta salad.

This salad depends on the freshest produce so do not skimp on the quality of the ingredients. There are two versions of the salad, one with fresh cherry tomatoes and the other with deeper-flavoured sun-dried tomatoes. I tend to make the fresh version during the summer when the tomatoes are bright and sweet and the other in the depths of winter. This salad can be a meal, as it usually is for me. The pasta fills you up and the vegetables add all the flavour. The sweet bite of tomatoes, the acid from the capers and olives and the nuttiness from the pine nuts come together beautifully. This is also a super simple salad to make, one that can be thrown together at the last minute.

In Feasts, Sabrina Ghayour focuses on Middle eastern flavours, both traditional and contemporary. The recipes are simple and the dishes always turn out well. This is a lovely cookbook with recipes for casual dinners with family, and also formal dinners with guests. The book crosses a spectrum of flavours bringing life to an otherwise boring table.

For more recipes from this cookbook, click here.



Ingredients:

1 cup orzo pasta

1 cup tender green beans

1/2 cup oil-cured sundried tomatoes or fresh cherry tomatoes

1/2 cup olives, Kalamata preferred

4 tablespoons parsley, minced

1/2 cup feta cheese, crumbled

4 tablespoons capers

1/4 cup pine nuts, lightly toasted

A generous drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil

1/2 teaspoon pepper

Salt, to taste


Cook the pasta per the directions on the packet minus 1 minute for al dante. Do not make the pasta mushy.


Trim the green beans into 1-inch pieces and steam for 1 minute to blanch them. The beans need to retain their crunch still, do not make the beans mushy.


Dice the sun-dried tomatoes or cut the cherry tomatoes in half.


Mix all the ingredients and toss well. taste for salt and adjust as needed.


Serve at room temperature.

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