Looking for an easy dinner that won’t heat up your house or require you to fire up the grill? Here’s a recipe for a simple pasta salad that has less than 10 ingredients and can compete with any salad you’d find in a gourmet deli.
Last week when we returned from our vacation to the East Coast the weather in Minnesota was 90+ degrees! We live in a small house in St. Paul without air conditioning and when the oven or even the burners turn on in our house, it’s an instant sauna. So in the heat of the summer I turn to simple recipes that are tasty, hearty and most importantly, require minimal kitchen appliance use!
This recipe is great for bringing to a picnic, BBQ, outdoor concert or potluck and its great to make on the weekend and keep for lunches throughout the week. When buying dill for the recipe, you can find 1 ounce packages (the plastic containers are near produce area) in stores or you can find fresh dill at the farmers market. When buying dill at the Farmer’s Market, make sure you are buying fresh dill (soft leaves) and not pickling dill (dried). The dill and lemon juice come together in this salad and create a dill pickle taste so if you are making this for kids tell them you are making pickle pasta salad!
This dish can be easily made vegetarian by simply leaving out the chicken but you can also add a package of extra firm tofu that you crumble or cube. If you don’t like goat cheese, you can substitute feta or even crumbled cream cheese.
1b cooked Orzo Pasta
3 cups of cooked Chicken (diced)
3/4 cup chopped fresh Dill
1 cup chopped Green Onions (green part only)
2 Cucumbers chopped
8 oz of Goat Cheese (crumbled)
Juice from 2 large Lemons
1/2 cup Olive Oil
1/2 teaspoon Salt
Cook orzo pasta according to package directions, drain and set aside.
In a large bowl, combine cooked pasta, chicken, dill, green onion, cucumber, and crumbled goat cheese.
Toss with lemon juice, olive oil and salt.