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Orzo Salad w/Fragrant Sesame Dressing (P, TNT)
Source: Sharon Friedman (a friend)
Serves: 8-10

1 tsp. salt
3/4 cup oil (note: can half this at least)
1/2 cup rice vinegar
2 tbsp. rice wine or dry sherry
1/2 tsp. grated orange rind
1 tsp. soy sauce
2 tbsp. thinly sliced scallions
1 tsp. minced ginger
1/2 tsp. minced garlic
1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper
1 tsp. pepper
1 tbsp. sugar
2 tbsp. minced fresh coriander or parsley

1 lb. uncooked orzo
1/4 cup sesame oil (Chinese dark)
3 cups shredded carrots
2 cups raisins
1 cup unsalted sunflower seeds or pine nuts lightly toasted

Cook orzo 7-10 minutes. Rinse well. Drain well 2-3 minutes. Toss orzo with sesame oil. Cool completely.

Mix dressing ingredients together in separate bowl.

Combine orzo sesame oil mixture with the remaining salad ingredients. Toss with the dressing.

Refrigerate for 2-3 hours before serving (can also be served at room temperature).

Poster's Notes:
Here is a cold orzo salad that I have served many times--and has been quite a hit. What I like about it, is that it can be served as an appetizer or side dish. It makes quite a bit--so if you are serving for only 4-6 I would half the recipe--as the 8-10 yield size allows very very generous portions. I hope you like it! Oh yes, the recipe does call for quite a bit of regular oil--I would at least half the amount of regular oil, or if you would like eliminate it completely. The sesame oil (which is different) in the list of salad ingredients is a must for flavor. I am leaving in the original amounts so that you can make note of the original proportions.

Also note, that I leave out the rice wine or dry sherry (I do not substitute 2 tbsp. of other liquid). Rice vinegar can be substituted for regular vinegar if none is available. I use pine nuts when preparing this recipe--but if they are hard to find or very expensive you can use the sunflower seeds mentioned in the recipe. I do not care for crushed red pepper--I leave this ingredient out, and still find it very flavorful and yummy. I hope you enjoy!

Posted by Meira Saks

Nutritional Info Per Serving: N/A