it is very hot here on the westside of maui!
our cute house faces west so we get stunning sunsets and lots of heat at the end of the day- definitely too hot to turn on the oven in the evening. so i’ve been thinking about some yummy foods that are ready to eat for dinner with only some minor prep earlier in the day.
the first easy cool dinner was an orzo salad made with fresh dill, chickpeas, feta, and caramelized onions– i found this recipe on eat me, delicious. she has another similar recipe posted just today that uses barley instead of pasta. hearty and pretty, but the olives, raw onions and tomatoes doesn’t really do it for me; i think i will stick with the orzo! find her version with the link above…. this is what i cooked up:
orzo + dill + chickpea pasta salad
1 cup uncooked orzo
1- 2 cups cooked chickpeas (2 was too much; i think about 1 cup would be plenty)
1/2 cup caramelized onions (cooked in olive oil with a dash of sucanat)
lots of cracked pepper
1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese (optional)
1/4 -1/2 cup chopped fresh dill (this is definitely the most important aspect of this pasta!)
1/4 cup sundried tomatoes (well, home-dried! soaked in olive oil, balsamic and water)
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
splash of cider or red wine vinegar
1 bunch of curly kale
1 cup baby arugula
cook up your orzo (it cooks quickly, about five minutes). drain in a colander and rinse with cold water. blanch the kale in hot water, and rinse with cold water; set aside in a separate bowl. add the orzo and all other ingredients to a large bowl and mix well, adjusting salt/pepper/oil to taste. add the arugula and the dressing just before serving over the curly kale (or whatever, mix it in!).
that reminds me of another really yummy dish i was hooked on for months- a yummy salad with carrots, raisins, grain berries and an easy tangy dressing … i think i was supposed to post for a friend months ago but never did… oops :) maybe i will make this today!
2 cups chopped or shredded carrots
1 cup cooked wheat or spelt berries
1/2 cup soaked raisins or currants
1/2 cup fresh dill (parsley will suffice, but dill is much better)
1/4 cup pumpkin seeds and/or sunflower seeds and/or sesame seeds
olive oil, lemon juice, vinegar
salt + pepper
cook your spelt or wheat berries and let them cool; put in a big bowl. food process or grate four to six carrots and toss in the bowl with the berries; add all the other ingredients and mix well. toss a bit of olive oil, juice and vinegar over the salad and mix well with salt and pepper to taste.
this simple recipe can be adapted many ways: more grains, less carrots, orzo instead of berries, chopped broccoli, whatever you like! and it can very easily be made into a full meal with the addition of some cooked greens and a bit of tofu or tempeh. enjoy!