Posted by Megan | Lunch, Misc, Pasta, Sides, Vegetarian

It is amazing how much time you can waste while you’re unemployed. Like, I’m actually shocked at myself that of all things, I haven’t been blogging. I have oodles of time on my hands! And somehow I was better at keeping up with daily blog posts when I was working 10-11 hour work days, plus school. I guess the lack of structure makes me forget what time is. Anyways, my lovely alma mater is badass and lets you still come in for career advising, even if you graduated a few years before. So I did that today and at least now know what kinds of jobs to look for! Yaaay maybe I won’t be unemployed anymore.

But seriously, the time just slips away-running, royal baby stalking, job applications, wedding planning, and errands fill my days. I know this is so exciting to hear about. We haven’t even been cooking as much as usual-we’ve been going back and forth to Fairfax a lot, so many nights it’s easier to just heat something up or go out. The shame. I know. But before retackling job applications and wedding planning, today I present you with Orzo Salad with Pesto. We had this little dish for lunch all last week and it was a hit! Fresh herbs made into pesto, with a light pasta and some feta, and we were happy campers.

Cooking Notes: Will substituted basil and parsley from our garden for the spinach that the recipe originally called for. And we used pine nuts instead of walnuts for the pesto. We also eliminated olives because we don’t like them.

Orzo Salad with Pesto (adapted from The Kitchn; serves 8-10 as a side)
6-8 oz. of parsley/basil, destemmed
2 tbsp pine nuts
1/3 cup grated parmesan
2 cloves garlic
Juice from 1/2 a lemon
1/4 tsp salt
3-4 tbsp olive oil (at your discretion)
1 lb. orzo pasta
6 oz. feta cheese, crumbled
1 clove shallot, diced small
Juice of 1/2 a lemon

Place parsley, basil, pine nuts, parmesan, cloves, lemon juice, and salt in a food processor. Pulse until the ingredients are incorporated and the basil/parsley is roughly chopped. While still pulsing, begin to pour in olive oil until the pesto reaches the consistency you desire. Take a taste and decide if you need to add any other ingredients (salt, pepper, lemon juice).

Cook the orzo in boiling well-salted water until it is al dente, about 8 minutes. Strain and immediately combine with the pesto while the pasta is still warm. Add the feta, shallots, and lemon juice to the pasta and stir gently to combine. Taste and add more salt, pepper, or lemon juice as needed. Let the salad cool and refrigerate.

Recipe: The Kitchn: Orzo Salad with Pesto


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