My very first installment of "I can cook!" is ready! Here is the menu from our Lost Lake Picnic and hike (Amazing photos and story to come). Since I packed this as a picnic, everything was eaten at room temperature. Or Rubbermaid cooler temperature I guess. But it was good, no matter the temperature!
First up - Orzo Pasta Salad
I have made the same sort of salad many times for parties, but as a Barefoot Contessa recipe. That particular one is much more expensive, because it has roasted prawns and premium cheeses. This is my version that I kind of made on a whim one day and loved.
1/2 lb Orzo Pasta
About a cup of chopped cucumber (I like the hothouse)
About a cup of grape tomatoes
One bunch scallions, chopped up (white and green parts)
Half a red pepper, finely diced
1/2 cup crumbled Feta cheese
Salt & Pepper
Cook the orzo according to package and drain. Throw in the rest of the above ingredients, and then dress with this vinaigrette: (Or, if you are lazy like I am sometimes, you can pour a bottle of Italian dressing or whatever you like over it. But try it once with the homemade dressing - it is really worth it!)
2/3 cup olive oil
Juice and zest from one lemon
Juice and zest from one lime
A pinch of salt & pepper
If you dress the salad hot, it kind of flavors the orzo. Then, chill the salad and eat it.*
I also made Hummus and cheese sandwiches with rolls from Safeway. The Hummus you can buy, or make. It is surprisingly simple!
1 can Garbanzo beans
Juice and zest of 1 lemon
1 clove garlic
2 tbsp Tahini
1 tsp salt
A little H20
Put this in here and blitz like crazy. Before we had a Cuisinart, I only would buy it. For the cheese, we like Laughing Cow, Provolone, Brie - whatever is handy. I rounded out the picnic with Hermiston Watermelon my Mom brought last week. It was a hit!
*Don't let Ben get ahold of it if you want any. Standard rule applying to most all food.