Melon Orzo Salad with Orange Poppyseed Vinaigrette

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I feel like I am full of complaints here lately, but I have been suffering from some serious foodie mental block. If you haven’t noticed, it has been a couple of days since my last post. I’m not usually this lazy, and am usually pretty good at having a good 3-4 posts/recipes up a week. I’m going through this thing called “I need to eat because I’m hungry, but I don’t have an appetite for anything.” Does this ever happen to you guys? I think it’s my being constantly surrounded by food all day and night. Don’t get me wrong. I love what I do, and I wouldn’t change a thing about it. Fortunately (or unfortunately?) for all of you, I think my gears are a-turning again. This makes me happy because I have been hungry for some good food. Memorial Day is Monday. Did you know that? Well I completely FORGOT! Ahh! Because my anxiety for this weekend has completely taken over my soul, I came up with this bad boy of an orzo salad. It’s delicious guys. Soooooo good. It is great for a picnic or potluck, and I HIGHLY suggest you whip it up for this weekend. You’ll love it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Beer Love:
Beer: Prairie Ale
Brewed By: Prairie Artisan Ales
Style: Saison / Farmhouse Ale
ABV: 8.2%
IBUs: 25
Description: Have I ever mention my never-ending love for Prairie Artisan Ales? Holy moly guys. If you have yet to try ANYTHING from Prairie, please, please, please do yourself a tremendous favor and try it! I have never had anything from Prairie that I absolutely didn’t love. They do some crazy things, and somehow, it always works. I really wanted a great summer brew for this beer pairing, and Prairie makes a great saison in their Prairie Ale. You get some fruity notes, but it’s not out of control in fruit flavor. It is crisp and delicious and really enhances the flavors going on in this orzo salad (especially the cantaloupe). Try it. You’ll love it. I promise.

 

 

 

 

For some “Pintastic” inspiration for Memorial Day weekend, head over to Pinterest and check out my pinboard dedicated to all things Memorial Day!

 

Follow Justine’s board {memorial day} on Pinterest.

 

I know things look a little bit different as far as the recipe format is concerned (see below). We have been suffering some problems with our recipe widget. We are currently in the process of a site redesign (Which should be up soon, I promise!), and it will be featuring a new recipe format all together. For now, I’m keeping it simple and just inserting the text for the recipe. I know. It’s super boring, and you don’t get the nutrition facts. Sad face, but I promise good things are a-coming!

As a side note, if anyone has any problems viewing older posts, please shoot me an email through the contact page. Our recipe widget has caused a lot of older recipes to crash. Boo! I’m working on fixing them, but it’s taking some time, so if you come across an error on a page. Please let me know!

Ok, I’m done being boring. Here is the recipe. Wee!

Melon Orzo Salad with Orange Poppyseed Vinaigrette

Cook Time: 10 minutes
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Serves: 8

Ingredients
FOR THE PASTA SALAD
2 cups orzo pasta
2 boneless and skinless chicken breasts, cooked through and diced small
1 1/2 cups cantaloupe, diced small
1 1/2 cups cucumber, diced small
3/4 cup dried cranberries
3/4 cup slivered almonds
1 1/2 cups baby arugula, loosely chopped
FOR THE ORANGE POPPYSEED VINAIGRETTE
3/4 cup canola oil
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup white wine vinegar
1/4 cup orange juice
zest from one orange
1 tablespoons minced garlic
1 teaspoon sugar
salt
pepper
2 tablespoons poppy seeds
1 teaspoon mustard powder

Instructions
Bring a large pot of salted water to a rolling boil. Add the orzo and cook until al dente, approximately 8-10 minutes. Drain and set aside to cool.

In a large bowl, combine the orzo pasta, chicken breast, cantaloupe, cucumber, cranberries, almonds and arugula. Toss the ingredients until combined. Set aside.

Prepare your vinaigrette by whisking together the oil, vinegars, orange juice, orange zest, garlic, sugar, a dash of salt and pepper, poppy seeds and mustard powder. Whisk until all of the ingredients are smooth and incorporated. Drizzle the dressing over the salad and toss to combine.

Cover and refrigerate until you are ready to use.

This salad can be served warm, at room temperature or cold! Enjoy!

xoxo,
 

Justine
 

 

Other Great Pasta Salad Recipes!
Mediterranean Olive Couscous Salad

 

Greek-Style Couscous Salad

 

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