Black Bean Orzo Pasta Salad with Tequila Lime Chicken or Shrimp


This versatile dish can be prepared ahead and makes the perfect summer meal when paired with Tequila Lime Grilled Chicken or Shrimp (recipe included) or a club sandwich for lunch.

Recommended wine pairing: Chardonnay

1/3 cup olive oil
1/2 cup freshly squeezed lime juice
1 bunch of cilantro, roughly chopped
1 lb. dry orzo pasta
15 oz. can of black beans, drained and rinsed
1/2 cup red onion, chopped fine
1/2 of 1 red pepper, chopped fine
1/2 of 1 yellow pepper, chopped fine
1 jalapeno, seeds removed and chopped fine
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon black pepper

In a food processor or blender, combine the oil, cilantro and lime juice and blend until smooth.

Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook orzo 1-2 minutes less than the package directions. The orzo should not be mushy and should be “al dente.” Drain and rinse under cold water to stop the cooking.

In a large mixing bowl, combine the orzo, black beans, red onion, jalapeno, red pepper, yellow pepper, cilantro lime dressing, salt and pepper. Mix well and allow the mixture to set in the refrigerator for at least a couple hours or overnight to allow the flavors to integrate.

Before serving, mix well and add additional salt or pepper to taste. Serve chilled or at room temperature with Grilled Tequila Lime Chicken or Shrimp (see additional recipe below) or a club sandwich for lunch.

Grilled Tequila Lime Chicken or Shrimp
Place the chicken or shrimp in a large zip lock bag. Add to the bag a couple cloves of minced garlic, a splash of olive oil, a splash of freshly squeezed lime juice, a splash of tequila, two pinches of salt and one pinch of pepper. Seal the bag and mix the marinade around and allow to sit in the refrigerator for at least 20 minutes before grilling.

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