Crab and Artichoke Orzo Salad

I’m only through page 3 of the Recipe Book from the RCA class in Arkansas!  You know that means there are LOTS of good recipes headed your way.  This recipe was one of my favorites.  The flavors are fresh, the salad is pretty, and the work is easy.  I believe this is another recipe from Chef Suzie Stephens.

The recipe is great as-is for summer.  It can be altered for Fall by replacing the Crab with Grilled or Roasted Chicken and adding dried cranberries.  YUM!

Enjoy and I hope you have a GREAT week!

Crab and Artichoke Orzo Salad

1 lb (16 oz.) Orzo pasta, dry

6 oz. Artichoke Hearts, marinated and quartered (Reserve 4 quarters and coarsely chop the rest)

2 Garlic Cloves, chopped

1 Shallot, chopped

1 tsp Dijon Mustard

1 tsp Oregano, dried

2 large Basil Leaves, fresh

Zest of 1 Lemon

½ c. White Wine Vinegar

¾ c. Olive Oil, extra virgin

10 Sun-Dried Tomato Halves, oil-packed and cut into fourths

1 Red Bell Pepper, chopped

5 Scallions, thinly sliced

1 lb. Lump Crabmeat

2 Tbsp Parsley, fresh chopped

Salt and Pepper to taste

1.  In a pot of boiling salted water, cook the Orzo until al dente.  Drain and rinse under cold water, then drain well.  Transfer to a large bowl.

2.  In a blender, puree the 4 reserved artichoke quarters with the garlic, shallot, mustard, oregano, basil, and vinegar.  With the machine on, slowly pour in the olive oil.  Season to taste with salt and pepper.

3.  Stir the vinaigrette you made in the blender into the drained Orzo.  Add the chopped artichokes, sun-dried tomatoes, lemon zest, scallions, crabmeat, red bell pepper, and parsley.  Season to taste with salt and pepper.  Serve immediately.

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