Citruslove Bloghop: Light Fruity Orzo Salad with Citrus Vinaigrette

by Suzanne on January 7, 2012

in Soup & Salad

Orzo Citrus Fruit SaladWelcome to the Citruslove Bloghop, I am happy to share with you this recipe and wonderful bloghop that you can be part of too, check down at the bottom for directions on that. Each month we focus on an ingredient and come up with our own recipes to share with all of you.  I couldn’t be happier to have a citrus theme, there are so many ways to go with citrus and it was hard to choose what to do. I’m usually a dessert kind of girl but I thought since it is January I should fall into line with the rest of the population and try to make something light. My waistline needs a break from expanding during the holidays and could use some help slimming down :). This salad may look Summery to you but I couldn’t help it I just got back from visiting my family for the holidays in So. California where it always feels so wonderful. But actually, the citrus is ripe and in season right now and so are the avocados. The strawberries are a stretch but they are always being grown in a greenhouse somewhere in Ca. My kids can never seem to get enough strawberries so I usually have them around if the price is decent. The mangoes were on sale at my grocery store so I grabbed that too, I know Summer huh, well not every one lives north of the equator you know:).

I really like how this salad tasted, light with citrus accents but the avocado, cilantro and onions are a must to me, they really give this salad some added freshness. I decided to use all three of my favorite citrus fruits orange, lemon and lime. I zested all three fruits with a fine zester not the type that makes the long thick strips, although if that is the only zester you have you could then chop the strips finely. When the fruit zest is so fine and stirred well with the oil, it almost dissolves and gives the oil a nice flavor. I chose to make the vinaigrette by hand but you could also use a blender to save time and if you have those who don’t enjoy the large leaves of cilantro and green onion then throw those in the blender with the rest of the vinaigrette ingredients and it will get blended smooth and they won’t notice. Some people do not like cilantro at all so try a substitute flat leaf parsley instead, it will lend a different flavor but still a freshness from an herb that this salad needs. I thought of some other possibilities to add to the salad, poppy seeds are a no brainer that I didn’t think about till after, just add a teaspoon to the vinaigrette. Some sliced almonds or blanched almonds would give a nice crunch and texture to the salad plus wonderful flavor. Well I hope you give this recipe a try and make it your own by using the fruits you love.

Here is a list of the lovely Hosts of this bloghop please give them some love and say hello!

Citruslove Bloghop: Light Fruity Orzo Salad with Citrus Vinaigrette

3 oranges one zested and juiced, 2 peeled and chopped
1 lemon zested and juiced
1 lime zested and juiced
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
1 tsp. salt
3 T. agave nectar or honey
crushed white pepper corns to equal 1 tsp.
1 cup orzo pasta, cooked
2 avocados chopped
1 mango chopped
1/2 bunch of cilantro chopped
1/2 cup chopped green onion

Step 1: Cook pasta according to box directions.
Step 2: While pasta is cooking make the vinaigrette by zesting the fruit first into a medium size bowl, then add the oil, salt, pepper and stir well. While stirring mix in the juice of the orange, lemon and lime then add the agave. Taste for seasoning and adjust to your liking then set aside.
Step 3: Peal and chopped the oranges, avocado and mango and lightly toss together to coat the avocado so it won’t turn brown.
Step 4: Chopped the onions and cilantro trying to leave out the large stems and put with the fruit. Slice strawberries and add to the other fruit.
Step 5: After the pasta has cooked and cooled add it to the fruit and toss lightly. If you use warm pasta the oil and vinegar will get soaked up in the pasta making it dry.
Step 6: Pour 3/4 of the dressing over the salad and toss lightly to coat. Reserve the rest of the dressing for later. Now refrigerate a few hours. Pour the remainder of the dressing on right before serving and lightly toss.
Serves: 6-8

Please join in on the #citruslove fun by linking up any citrus recipe from the month of January 2012. Don’t forget to link back to this post, so that your readers know to come stop by the #citruslove event! The twitter hashtag is #citruslove :).

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1 bakingaddict January 7, 2012 at 6:35 pm

This looks delicious and refreshing! Salads are so versatile, can’t wait to try this out myself 🙂

2 Linda January 7, 2012 at 7:29 pm

This is a lovely salad. I’m in Florida so I know how you feel having just been in California. Citrus just pair so nicely with avocado. I can’t wait to try this!!

3 Lisa {Smart Food and Fit} January 7, 2012 at 7:31 pm

Hi there, visiting from citrus bloghop! Love your salad. Looks like we both added avocado’s to our salad and fresh oranges and their juices. 🙂

4 Laura @ The Art of Cooking Real Food January 7, 2012 at 9:54 pm

What a fun, refreshing salad! The combination of avocado, cilantro, and citrus just looks amazing!

5 Kevin (BBQ Smoker Site) January 7, 2012 at 10:09 pm

Love it! We do grapefruit and avocado together all the time, as my Mom has a killer pink grapefruit tree in her back yard. Going to add this recipe to our collection!

6 soni January 8, 2012 at 12:41 am

What a lovely recipe!So refreshing and delicious looking!Thanks for sharing and sending you some citruslove 🙂

7 Alli January 8, 2012 at 3:34 am

So fresh and light! I love citrus combined with avocado yum.

8 Sylvia@ peaches and donuts January 8, 2012 at 8:45 am

What a cheerful looking salad that will brighten up anyone’s day!! I shall make this for lunch soon! Happy #citruslove!

9 Kristi Rimkus January 8, 2012 at 10:49 am

After all the heavy holiday food, this salad is very refreshing!

10 Jessica | Oh Cake January 8, 2012 at 12:23 pm

I love all of these flavors and I never would have thought of pairing them with orzo! Great #citruslove recipe!

11 Elizabeth @Mango_Queen January 8, 2012 at 3:10 pm

What a delightful citrus orzo salad! Must try this one. Thanks for the recipe. Glad to do citrus love with you!

12 The Wimpy Vegetarian January 8, 2012 at 8:30 pm

This looks like the perfect meal after the holidays. It looks so refreshing! Sending you lots of #citruslove!!

13 foodwanderings January 8, 2012 at 9:25 pm

I love orzo with mushrooms but your salad looks so fresh and vibrant!! Excellent hop & nice meeting you!

14 Baker Street January 9, 2012 at 10:20 am

What a gorgeous salad. So vibrant and I bet that vinaigrette takes it up a notch. 🙂

15 juniakk @ mis pensamientos January 9, 2012 at 2:32 pm

i LOVE this salad! full of citrus flavor with avocado! oh my, i am totally bookmarking this!

16 beti January 9, 2012 at 9:42 pm

it looks so simple and delicious

17 Richa@HobbyandMore January 10, 2012 at 1:06 am

This salad is absolutely gorgeous.. so colorful! and ther eis some mango and avocado in there too! super yumm. This is definitely going to be made as soon as it gets a bit warm here.

18 Lisa January 10, 2012 at 3:09 am

I love orzo, and your salad looks so colorful and bursting with such a great combination of flavors! I have yet to try a meyer lemon, but with the avocado (LOVE) and mango, I’m sure I can get away with just a plain old lemon 🙂 Fun co-hosting citruslove with you!

19 Liz January 10, 2012 at 2:47 pm

Oh, I love orzo…and this beautiful salad sounds amazing!!! So many yummy ingredients! Fun hosting the #citruslove bloghop with you~

20 ally January 10, 2012 at 4:22 pm

Suzanne! Love the fruitiness and zest of this orzo salad! Will wake up a dreary winter day…I’ll be trying this! Ally 🙂

21 Evelyne@CheapEthnicEatz January 10, 2012 at 6:02 pm

I am a big fan of orzo and you salad just looks so amazing, very summery for a dull winter

22 Terra January 13, 2012 at 9:30 pm

Wow what a beautiful salad! I love how hearty and healthy it looks:-) I love orzo, but just don’t enjoy it enough:-) It was fun co-hosting citruslove with you! Hugs, Terra

23 EA-The Spicy RD January 14, 2012 at 7:28 am

Fabulous salad and I love all the flavors you included, especially the cilantro :-). I can’t eat orzo since it’s not gluten free, but I bet this would be fabulous with quinoa, millet, or brown rice too. I live in So. Cal (San Diego) and haven’t had any strawberries yet, but February is usually when I begin the strawberry feast, so coming up soon! So glad you joined the blog hop!

24 valerie January 15, 2012 at 3:10 pm

The pictures are wonderful! And this salad looks really good!!

25 Roxana GreenGirl {A little bit of everything} January 17, 2012 at 9:52 am

I love orzo pasta. Makes a great addition to the salads. And the citrus flavors, so refreshing.
Beautiful photos to go with this delicious salad, Suzanne

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