Salmon, Asparagus and Orzo Salad

by Anne Bennett on March 27, 2015

salmon2

Taken just before digging in, with my trusty iPhone 6 Plus.

Asparagus, orzo and feta cheese? Didn’t I just post a recipe starring those three ingredients?  Yes, but when you’ve got a Costco-sized bag of asparagus in the fridge, you’re not above plagiarism. Besides, this one includes salmon, which makes it a hardier, albeit healthy, Spring entree.

I usually buy wild salmon during salmon season in late Spring, but lately I’ve been buying sustainably farmed salmon and I find it equally delicious — not as strong or fishy as it used to be.

The recipe comes from an article in Cooking Light about 5-ingredient dinners. Since there are only two of us and this serves 6, I adjusted amounts, using 1/2 cup of orzo and 12 ounces of salmon. I winged it with the asparagus. We had just enough leftovers for my lunch. I’m giving you the original amounts below, but if you’re cooking for two, 1/2 cup of orzo will do.

I think you’ll love the lemon-dill vinaigrette. It’s light (only two teaspoons of olive oil) and has feta cheese, a tangy, slightly salty accompaniment to the salmon.  The Weight Watcher points include the vinaigrette, so you can eat with abandon.  Figuratively speaking, that is.

1 pound asparagus, cut into 3-inch pieces
1 cup orzo (rice-shaped pasta)
1 (1 1/4-lb.) salmon filet
1/4 cup thinly sliced red onion
Lemon-Dill Vinaigrette

Bring salted water to a boil in a large saucepan and cook asparagus 3 minutes, until tender-crisp. Remove asparagus from water with slotted spoon, reserving the water in the pot. Plunge asparagus into ice water to stop cooking. Drain and set aside.

Return reserved water to a boil and add orzo. Cook according to package directions and drain in a colander.

While orzo cooks, sprinkle salmon filet with salt and pepper. Place on a foil-lined broiler pan coated with cooking spray. Broil 5 minutes, or until fish flakes easily with a fork. Using two forks, break fish into large chunks.

Combine salmon, orzo, asparagus and red onion in a bowl and add Lemon-Dill vinaigrette. Toss gently to coat.

Serves 6
WW Points per serving (about 1 1/4 cups): 8 (including vinaigrette)

Lemon-Dill Vinaigrette

1/3 cup crumbled feta cheese
1 Tbsp. chopped fresh dill (I used 1/2 tsp. dried)
3 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
2 tsp. extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 freshly ground black pepper

Combine all ingredients in a jar and shake.

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