Two weeks ago I posted an orzo salad recipe with spinach and tomatoes that I adapted from Food Network star Rachael Ray. What you see here is…sort of the same thing but with grilled salmon. This recipe is from Bravo Food star Curtis Stone. (Where would we be without TV food stars?)
Great food minds obviously think alike because both chefs combined spinach, tomatoes and orzo with a few other ingredients to make a light and summery side dish or entree. Rachael didn’t call for feta cheese in her salad but I added it after seeing Curtis’ recipe. And Curtis called for pine nuts, which I skipped. I added kalamata olives instead.
You can usually learn a thing or two from food stars and here’s what I gleaned from Rachael: she julienned her spinach leaves and then tossed the hot orzo on top of them to slightly wilt them. It worked beautifully. Curtis topped his salad with freshly grilled salmon, making it a full meal.
Wild salmon is now available at local supermarkets; I suggest you try this slightly adapted version of Curtis’ recipe and make it your own — use toasted pine nuts or olives and either leave the baby spinach leaves whole or thinly slice them. The following vinaigrette is lovely but if you’d like a lighter version, use the dressing from Rachael’s recipe.
I’m leaving soon for the supermarket to get salmon and spinach for tonight’s dinner. I’ll be making this recipe all summer long. Easy, healthy, delicious. Since the World Cup is still ongoing, I get to say it again, “SCORE!”
1 cup uncooked orzo
3 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
3 Tbsp. finely chopped shallots or red onion
1 garlic clove, minced
1/4 cup olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
3 Cups (about 2 0z.) fresh baby spinach
1 1/2 cups grape tomatoes, halved
1/4 cup thinly sliced basil leaves
1/2 cup crumbled low-fat feta cheese
1/2 cup kalamata olives, halved
8 oz. fresh salmon fillet
Olive oil spray
Salt and pepper to taste
To make orzo salad: boil orzo in lightly salted water until al dente. Drain and set aside. In a medium bowl whisk together vinegar, shallots and garlic. Gradually whisk in olive oil. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
In a large bowl toss warm orzo, spinach, tomatoes and basil with vinaigrette. Set aside at room temperature.
Lightly spray or coat salmon fillet with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill, turning once, until fish is opaque with a slightly rosy center when flaked in the thickest part. Remove from grill.
Mound salad on plates, sprinkle evenly with feta cheese and olives and top with salmon.
WW Points per serving: 11