Dinner doesn’t get any easier than this. It’s fantastic freshly made or as leftovers! I love using orzo pasta, to me it’s lighter than rice and soaks up the dressing nicely.
Greek Style Grilled Shrimp Orzo Pasta Salad
(Adapted from Martha Stewart)
For the the pasta salad
2 cups (340g) orzo pasta (rice-shaped pasta)
2-3 lemons juiced and zested for salad and for shrimp (approx ½ cup lemon juice)
½ cup olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
2 scallions, white and green parts minced
1 cup chopped fresh herbs (I usually do a combination of dill, parsley and mint – plus more if you want it extra herby)
1 large cucumber, unpeeled, seeded, and medium-diced or 4 small Persian cucumbers diced
2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
½ cup small red onion peeled and diced
200 grams good feta cheese, large diced (or more feta if desired)
Cook orzo according to package directions then drain and pour into a large bowl.
Add the lemon juice and olive oil to pasta and season with salt and pepper.
Add the shrimp to the orzo and then add the herbs, cucumber, red onion, scallions and toss well.
Toss in some of the remaining lemon zest if desired and season with salt and pepper to taste.
Gently fold in the feta.
Serve immediately or it can be left aside at room temperature for 1 hour to allow the flavours to blend. You can make ahead and refrigerate overnight but just make sure to leave out the tomatoes. Toss them in before serving the next day so they are fresh. If making ahead, taste again for seasoning and bring back to room temperature before serving.
For the grilled shrimp
1½ -2 pounds (16 to 18 count) shrimp, peeled and deveined (I like to leave the tails on)
1-2 tablespoons olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
½ Teaspoon lemon zest
½ teaspoon chili flakes (optional)
Toss shrimp with the olive oil, chili flakes, lemon zest and season with salt and pepper.
Preheat grill or grill pan to medium high heat. Make sure to oil the grill pan or grill grates. Place shrimp on the grill. Grill on each side for about two minutes or until no longer pink. Remove and set aside when done.
This is a VERY well dressed salad. We Greeks love our olive oil and our lemon juice. Please adjust amounts according to taste.
When it comes to the amount of herbs, or individual ingredients like the various veggies, onions and feta please adjust amounts according to taste as well.
If you don’t have a grill or grill pan – have no fear! Simply give your shrimp a quick pan fry or roast them on a sheet pan in a preheated oven for 5-6 minutes.