Store away your bulky coats and boots – spring has sprung! Once the warmer weather arrives, the hubby and I like to pack a lunch then head to the marina, spending the afternoon on our boat. When packing a lunch, for me, it must be something quick and effortless. There no way I want to spend my time on the boat prepping or cooking food – I want to enjoy the water. That’s why this pesto and mozzarella orzo salad is one of my favorites. Since it’s usually just the two of us, I pack the salad in individual jars, so we can eat right out of them.
Not only does this fresh, healthy, and full of flavor salad make the perfect picnic dish, but it works well when served as a side dish with lunch or dinner too.
- 1-cup orzo pasta
- 1 cup fresh basil, roughly chopped
- ¼ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 garlic clove
- 3 tablespoons toasted pin nuts
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 5 ounces or ½ cup buffalo mozzarella, torn ( I like to get the tiny balls and tear them up)
- ⅓ cup packed sun dried tomatoes, roughly chopped
- ½ cup arugula
- sea salt and ground pepper to taste
- Bring a small pan of water to a rolling boil, add the orzo pasta and cook for 8 minutes. Drain and set aside.
- In a small frying pan, lightly toast pine nuts. Remove from heat.
- In a food processor, add basil, Parmesan, garlic, pine nuts, olive oil, and a pinch of salt and pepper, and pulse until smooth.
- In a large bowl, add the orzo and pesto and mix to combine. Then add the torn mozzarella, tomatoes and arugula, and toss. Add additional salt and pepper to taste.