Meatless Mains

Orzo Salad with Feta and AvocadoKatie & Emily

1 pound orzo, preferably large grain
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 Haas avocados
2 Pints cherry tomatoes, stems removed & halved
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 shallots, finely diced
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded if desired and minced
juice of 1 orange
grated zest of 1 lemon
5 ounces feta cheese, preferably French, crumbled
leaves from 6 large marjoram sprigs, coarsely chopped, plus 4-6 whole sprigs

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Generously salt the boiling water, add the orzo, and cook until al dente, 8-10 minutes. Pour into a fine-mesh sieve and run under cold water to stop the cooking. Drain well.

Put the orzo in a large serving bowl and toss with about half the olive oil and a pinch of salt. Pit, peel and cut the avocados into small cubes. (Cut them just before tossing the pasta so they donít discolor.) Add the avocados, tomatoes, garlic, shallots, jalapeno, orange juice, lemon zest, feta cheese, chopped marjoram, and the remaining olive oil. Season with salt to taste. Toss gently, being careful not to break up the avocado too much. Taste and adjust the seasoning. Garnish with marjoram sprigs and serve.

Makes 4 main or 6 first courses.



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