Zesty vinaigrette ties this dazzling combination of fresh and sunny Italian flavors together. It makes us forget the notion of pasta salad drenched in mayonnaise! Keep a jar of the vinaigrette handy in the refrigerator as a dressing for any mixed salad.
- Italian Vinaigrette
- 1 clove garlic, crushed -
- 2 tsp white sugar -
- 2 tsp mustard powder -
- ½ tsp crushed red pepper flakes -
- ¼ cup + 2 Tbsp red wine vinegar -
- ½ cup extra-virgin olive oil -
- ½ cup vegetable oil -
- 1 Tbsp fresh parsley, chopped -
- ½ tsp dried oregano -
- ¼ cup fresh basil, chopped -
- Layered Salad
- 1 cup raw orzo -
- 2/3 cup Italian Vinaigrette (above) -
- 3 scallions, thinly sliced -
- ½ cup fresh basil, coarsely chopped -
- 2 large red tomatoes, coarsely chopped -
- ½ pint cherry tomatoes, cut in half -
- ½ cup Kalamata olives, pitted and halved -
- 7 oz mozzarella cheese, cut in bite-sized pieces -
- 3 yellow tomatoes or cherry tomatoes, cut in wedges -
- 2 red peppers, roasted and cut into strips -
- ½ English cucumber, halved lengthwise, seeded and thinly sliced -
- 1 Tbsp capers, rinsed and drained -
- Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste -
1. In a glass jar, mix together all of the ingredients and shake well. Refrigerate until ready to use.
1. Following the package directions, cook the orzo until tender. Drain and rinse under cold water.
2. Place the orzo in a large bowl and mix with 1/4 cup of the vinaigrette, scallions and basil. Transfer the orzo to a glass serving bowl and spread evenly to form the bottom layer.
3. Continue making the next layer with the tomatoes, followed by the cherry tomatoes, olives, cheese, yellow tomatoes, red pepper strips, and then cucumber slices. Sprinkle the capers on top. Pour the remaining dressing over the salad. Do not toss.
4. Cover and refrigerate for at least three hours or overnight. Bring to room temperature before serving. Toss salad and season with salt and pepper when ready to serve.
This recipe was featured in Mishpacha Magazine's Kosher Inspired, November 2010.