Lemon Orzo with Veggies

I know it’s not summer yet, but it’s okay to pretend right? This is a light and summery sort of meal that’s perfect for dinner and to pack for lunch the next day. It’s a lemony twist on pasta salad, without all the oily dressing. Boiling the orzo with the lemon juice and lemon rinds infuses the pasta with a light lemony taste. You can add in your own favorite veggies. Some cucumbers, carrots, or artichoke would be a nice addition.

Ingredients:
1 bunch of asparagus
1 small yellow onion
salt
pepper
olive oil
4 lemons
1 cup fresh peas
1 lb of orzo
10 cherry tomatoes
1 red pepper
3 or 4 sprigs of parsley

Directions:

  • Preheat your oven to 450°.
  • Snap off the ends of the asparagus and place them in a roasting pan. Thinly slice the onion and place the slices in the pan. Juice one lemon and pour the juice over the asparagus and onion so they’re evenly coated. Drizzle just a little bit of olive oil on top and season with salt and pepper.
  • Place the asparagus and onions in the oven for about 20 minutes. In the last 5 minutes of roasting, add the fresh peas to the pan.
  • Bring a medium sized pot of water to a boil. Squeeze the juice of one lemon into the boiling water and add in the lemon rinds as well. Make sure you filter out any lemon seeds first. Add the orzo and cook according to the package directions.
  • Chop the cherry tomatoes, red pepper, and fresh parsley.
  • Once the orzo is done, drain it and place it in a mixing bowl or large pot.
  • Cut the roasted asparagus spears into 1 inch pieces. (You can also do this before you roast them if you prefer.)
  • Add the asparagus, onions, peas, and the lemon juice from the roasting pan to the orzo. Add the chopped cherry tomatoes, red pepper, and parsley to the orzo.
  • Juice the remaining two lemons and pour the juice over the orzo. Add salt and pepper to taste. Stir the orzo well so everything is coated with the juice and seasoning.