Strong Arms for Kids

This recipe was inspired yet again by my new favorite book that I blogged about recently, Animal, Vegetable, Miracle by Barbara Kingsolver.  Conveniently enough, after making this recipe and adding some of my own touches, I noticed that the next No Croutons Required contest is all about zucchini.  Well I just figured that I was meant to post this recipe and enter it in this months challenge.  So here goes...Its a delicious pasta salad where the zucchini and carrots practically melts into the pasta creating a delicate texture.  The tomatoes add some extra color and a bit of moisture to the dish.  The portabellos on top give this salad a whole extra dimension allowing it to stand on its own as a main dish instead of just an interesting side.

The photo above was taken the first time I made this recipe.  That time I only added zucchini, but lately I have been adding lots of other fun things which I have added to the recipe below.


3⁄4 lb pkg orzo pasta
Bring 6 cups water or chicken stock to a boil and add pasta.  Cook 8 to 12
1 chopped onion, garlic to taste
3 large zucchini 
2 carrots
2 plum tomatoes, chopped
olive oil for sauté

Use a cheese grater to shred zucchini and carrots, sauté briefly with chopped
onion and garlic, add chopped tomatoes and sauté until zucchini is lightly golden.

slice portabello mushrooms, spread out evenly in baking dish.  Drizzle olive oil and balsamic vinegar over mushrooms and place under broiler on low for 8-10 minutes.  Take out baking dish, flip over mushrooms and broil on low again for another 8 minutes.

Add some thyme and oregano to zucchini mixture, stir thoroughly, and then remove mixture from heat.

Combine with 1⁄4 cup grated parmesan and cooked orzo, salt to taste, sprinkle chopped parsley on top and serve cool or at room


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