Most of the summer fruit and vegetables are fading in color and flavor, but we can still make a very colorful salad that will keep the summer on our plates. This Bell Pepper Orzo Salad is a crunchy, refreshing salad full of green, red, yellow, and orange. What can be more uplifting than that.
This salad is not totally raw. First of all the orzo is cooked (duh!), secondly the bell peppers and onion are cooked as well. Just a little bit, just enough to make them a tad sweeter, a bit more flavorful. But short enough to keep a crunch.
In this salad, the bell peppers are the main ingredient and the orzo is the supporting ingredient and I found that the raw bell peppers were too dominant; the orzo was not in play at all. By cooking the vegetables just a little bit, they are in sink with the orzo. There is a communication going on between the two; you will actually taste both, flavor and texture.
The used colored orzo in this Bell Pepper Orzo Salad; a way to emphasize the colors of the bell peppers, funny enough the red color of the orzo comes from red bell pepper. With regard to bell peppers, I bought all the colors I could get; green, red, orange and yellow.
After you cooked the pasta and the vegetables, allow them to cool. The temperature is up to you; you can go really cold or your can go luke warm. Depends on what you like. This particular salad I prefer at room temperature. Once the pasta and peppers are cooled the way you like it, add the dressing, It is made from olive oil, vinegar (or Verjus Blanc – my vinegar of choice), balsamic vinegar, Dijon mustard and chopped rosemary and sage, salt and pepper. The rosemary and sage may not be the most likely choice, but it makes the dressing really nice.
I cut some sharp Provolone cheese in slivers, using a vegetable cutter. This will add some pop. All in all, an easy salad, with lots of crunch, color and flavor.
Try this Bell Pepper Orzo Salad and Enjoy
Bell Pepper Orzo Salad
- 1/2 cup orzo
- 2 bell pepper 1/2 green, red, yellow, orange
- 1/2 onion sweet
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 3 ounces Provolone cheese sharp
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 tablespoon vinegar or Verjus Blanc
- 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- 1 teaspoon mustard Dijon
- 1 teaspoon rosemary
- 1 teaspoon sage
- salt and pepper
- Cook the orzo according to the directions on the packaging.
- In the meantime wash and cut each color of bell peppers in half as well as the onion in half. Clean the halves for the recipe and store the other halves for another recipe. Slice bell peppers and onion in small strips, all about the same size.
- Heat the olive oil in a skillet and add the onion and bell pepper strips and cook for a few minutes. Just to soften them a little bit, without losing their crunch. Transfer to a plate and allow to cool.
- Mix all the ingredients for the dressing and add salt and pepper to taste.
- When the orzo is cooked, rinse with cold water and allow to cool.
- Sliver the provolone cheese, by using a vegetable peeler.
- Mix orzo with onion, bell pepper. Add the dressing and coat the salad with the dressing. Add half of the cheese slivers and mix.
- Divide over 2 plates and sprinkle remaining cheese over the salad.