Site Overlay
Orzo Salad

Orzo Salad with Oregano, Parsley and Chive Pesto

Fasten your seat belts folks, we’re getting into the thick of produce season. And I love it.

I have a remarkably short memory when it comes to produce. Every summer (usually in June) I get really excited for tomatoes and peppers. Of course, completely forgetting that they don’t come in big batches (or at all) until later in the season.

Which means that this week has been fantastic, because the Produce Fairy came! Between the CSA and the farmers market, I’m drowning in vegetables. Bright and sweet peppers, plumb little cherry tomatoes, corn on the cob, kale, herbs, herbs and more herbs, you name it – and it’s in the kitchen.


(Yellow cherry tomatoes!)


(The peppers in the plastic bag are habaneros. My pepper lady at the farmers market was afraid I’d get the sweet and spicy mixed up. Talk about customer service!)

So even though it’s Labor Day weekend, it’s officially summer in our little apartment. We have bouquets of herbs and flowers on pretty much every available surface.


(Parsley with sunflowers peeking shyly from the background.)


And this salad idea came to me just by looking at our library table. “Hmmm, chives, parsley and oregano would be great in a pesto – on a pasta salad,” I thought.

I gathered up the herbs, ran into the kitchen and threw them into the food processor. Within 15 minutes this salad was plated, and I was happily devouring it.

This is the part of summer I love.

Orzo Salad with Oregano, Parsley and Chive Pesto

Serves 4, can easily be double or tripled.

1 ½ cups orzo
4 cups chicken or vegetable broth
1 cup flat-leaf parsley, roughly chopped
Chives (I used about ¼ cup, but that’s because I love the flavor. You might like less. Or more! It’s up to you.)
2 tablespoons fresh oregano, stripped from the stalk
½ cup chopped red pepper
¼ cup olive oil
¼ cup almonds
¼ cup shredded parmesan
1 tablespoon lemon juice
½ teaspoon kosher salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
Cherry tomatoes, halved
Bell peppers, sliced
Chopped onion, diced
Green olives, halved

Bring the broth to a boil. Add the orzo and cook until al dente, about 7 minutes. While the orzo is cooking, combine the parsley, chives, oregano, olive oil, almonds, parmesan, lemon juice, salt and pepper in a food processor. Process to desired texture.

Drain the orzo in a strainer and run under cold water.

Spoon the orzo into a large bowl, and pour the pesto over it. Stir well to combine. Add the tomatoes, bell pepper and olives.


(Photos by Launie Kettler)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *