Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Reheated Smoked Chicken and Orzo Salad

Header - The salmon's are open a little more.

When I smoke meat, I usually do up several chicken breasts and thighs for us, as Bev likes to use them for many dishes and we had already decided to have them for dinner this night. One of the things I love about blogging is having your recipes show up at just the right time.

As I was reading this am, Pioneer woman posted a recipe for oven baked chicken legs with a BBQ sauce using adobo sauce. While I’m not a big sauce user, I really like adobo so I decided to make up a batch to put on our chix. I made it up in the morning so it would have all day for flavor marrying.

Then the very next blog I read was from Velva at Tomatoes on the vine which was a recipe for Summer Orzo Salad. It had all these things we like, so we decided to have it rather than the planned wilted lettuce. As it turned out we had all of the ingredients on hand but since Bev is not a big fan of chick peas and wanted something with more contrasting color, we used black beans (I grabbed and opened a can of kidney beans by mistake, so I tossed them in as well). So our recipe became:

Summer Orzo Salad
Adapted very little from Velva Knapp

1 cup orzo
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 cloves garlic, crushed and peeled
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup red onion, chopped
1/2 cup Kalamata olives
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1- 14 ounce can artichoke hearts (not packed in oil), drained
1-14 ounce each black beans and dark red kidney beans
3/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
1/4 cup chopped fresh dill
3 tablespoons chopped fresh mint leaves
2 cups chopped vine ripened tomatoes (about 2 large)


In a large saucepan of boiling salted water, cook pasta until al dente. Drain in a colander and rinse under cold water until cool. Press to remove excess water. Transfer to a large bowl and toss with olive oil.

With a chef's knife, mash garlic and salt into a paste. Transfer to a small bowl and whisk in lemon juice and pepper. Set the dressing aside.

Gently squeeze excess moisture from artichoke hearts, and cut length-wise into eighths. Add to orzo along with chickpeas, onion, olives, feta, dill, mint and reserved dressing. Toss gently to combine and follow the part about use a large bowl - I had to move up a size before tossing.

Add tomatoes and toss again.

For the chicken breasts, I let them thaw to room temperature, wrapped in foil with a little water and heated it the little oven at 250* to an internal temp of 150* - took about an hour. I then took it to the grill cooked on medium heat for about 10 minutes to get a nice coating of the BBQ sauce. We grilled up an eggplant as well. Hot off the newly reworked gas grill.

And here’s my plate.

We all really liked the BBQ sauce and I'm glad I made up the whole recipe so I can try it on some pork and beef, it was good on the eggplant too – it reminds me of a Kansas City style sauce. We also thought the pasta salad was delicious, especially since we’re big fans of Mediterranean flavors. All in all it was an excellent meal after a hard day of gardening.

I took this shot from the deck while I was grilling.

All photos can be enlarged by clicking on them.

Have a great day and thanks for stopping by Almost Heaven South.

One year ago:  Living High On The Hog In St. Maarten



  1. Ah don't you just love it when everything works out like this? All components of this meal look so delicious, from the chicken to the orzo!

  2. We read the same blogs Larry. I saw Velva's salad and knew right away I would love it because we like orzo and it's so different from rice.

    I saw PW's BBQ sauce too and thought her idea of using just the adobo sauce sans the peppers sounded like a great idea.

    Your azaleas look even more beautiful this morning.

  3. I clicked on the bbq sauce link and think it sounds delicious. I think I better re-subscribe to PW Cooks posts. Saw that Orzo salad too and bookmarked it. It all sounds delicious. And last but not least those Azalias...omg.

  4. I adore orzo salads...this one sounds delicious too! And of course, love the pioneer woman's bbq sauce too...she uses adobo sauce!! YUM!!

  5. Larry, The photo of the flowers in bloom in your yard is spectacular! Just fabulous! Take Care, Big Daddy Dave & Laurie

  6. Looks like summer is coming right along at Almost Heaven South! And that includes the good summer food! I enjoy a good BBQ sauce.

  7. Great sounding salad - both ways! Love the yard photos, too.

  8. I have been liking orzo a lot lately, it's my favorite pasta and goes with so many things.


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