Monday, February 7, 2011

Spinach Orzo Pasta Salad

I love Whole Foods!  I REALLY love Whole Foods!  My budget does not.  Simple. Whole Foods has the most unbelievable prepared foods section. I have two favorites there:  1) Smoked Mozzarella Pasta Salad and 2) Spinach Orzo Pasta Salad.  Both run for approximately $7-8 a pound.   Not joking.

A couple of years ago, I decided I was going to duplicate both recipes and I did! I cannot even tell the difference between my version and that of Whole Foods.

Yesterday, I made a big batch of Spinach Orzo Pasta Salad.  It is so tasty and light!  B and I plan on eating out of it all week.

1 pound orzo pasta
3/4 of a bag of fresh baby spinach -- chopped pretty fine
1 small onion -- chopped fine.  My onion was really tiny.
1/4 C of crumbled feta.  Add more or less depending on how you like it.  I LOVE feta.
1/4 C of sliced kalamata olives
2 tsp. dried basil leaves.  I kind of crush them in the palm of my hand before adding to the dish.
1/4 C of Extra Virgin Olive Oil.  You can use less, if you like
Approximately 1/8 C of balsamic vinegar.
Salt and Pepper

Cook the orzo pasta in a pot of salted water until tender.  Drain well and run cold water on it.  Set aside.  In a large mixing bowl, mix the chopped spinach, chopped onion, basil, feta, and olives.  Dump in well drained pasta and mix everything thoroughly.  Start drizzling the oil and vinegar.  Stir as you go along and taste.  If you want more oil, add it.  More vinegar? Sure!  This part depends on how tangy you like it...or not!  Season with salt and pepper.  I also add a couple of dashes to cayenne.  Mix everything and refrigerate.

Seriously, it is really tasty.  I have some in my bag now.  I'm tempted to go and take a couple of bites!

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