Orzo with Everything

This is possibly one of five recipes that has been on repeat through most of my adult life. I play with the “Everything” part so much so that the recipe is never the same twice. Pasta — with a vinaigrette — and lots of stuff in it is my idea of a great time!

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups orzo (rice-shaped pasta; about 10 ounces)
  • 1/3 cup (packed) chopped drained oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes
  • 5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 cup (packed) chopped Kalamata olives or other brine-cured black olives
  • 1 cup finely chopped radicchio (about 1 small head)
  • 1/2 cup pine nuts, toasted
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 large garlic cloves, minced
  • Other ingredients I may or may not add: feta cheese, cucumbers, fresh tiny tomatoes, dill, chives, strips of salami or prosciutto, capers, mozzarella or provolone or fontina cut in cubes.

Directions

  1. Cook orzo in pot of boiling salted water until just tender but still firm to bite. Drain well. Transfer to large bowl. Add sun-dried tomatoes, oil, vinegar and olives and toss to blend. Let stand until cool. (Can be prepared 6 hours ahead. Cover and refrigerate. Bring to room temperature before continuing.)
  2. Mix chopped radicchio, pine nuts, chopped basil, Parmesan and garlic into orzo mixture. Season salad to taste with salt and pepper and serve.

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