Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Orzo Primavera

Not until my husband and I added a baby to our family, did I realize how much multi-generational households make sense. Although it is just the three of us who live in our house, my parents live close by ("exactly thirteen minutes away" my mom will tell you), and I recently had the opportunity to host my mother and father in law for a month. Not only does my son bring immeasurable joy to my parents, but not a day goes by that my husband and I don't express our gratitude to helpful family members.

In a culture of mother-in-law jokes, and families that don't wish to live in the same state as each other, I want to take a stand for family! Today, here, now, I am going to redefine "traditional family values" to mean valuing the tradition of families relying on each other, respecting each other, and living close enough to know the particulars of each others' tastes and the joys and sorrows of each others' hearts.

Your family and your love must be cultivated like a garden. Time, effort, and imagination must be summoned constantly to keep any relationship flourishing and growing.

- Jim Rohn, Washington born entrepeneur and author

This last week I caught my third cold in so many months. My mom came over and helped me with the baby so that I could rest. I hadn't taken a nap in over a month and was suprised when I lay down to read a book and woke an hour and a half later.

Today I had the opportunity to return the favor. After a long walk around the neighborhood, I convinced my mom to soak in my big tub and read a book. She is a woman with a lot of energy and an aversion to inactivity, so it did take convincing. While she rested, I made us an early dinner.

An Early Spring Dinner
Orzo Primavera

1/2 pound Orzo pasta
1 bunch asparagus
1 red beet
1 handful of beet greens, parsley, spinach, or kale
1 cup kalamata olives
1 tablespoon reserved brine from the olives
4 ounces feta cheese
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon dried italian herbs
salt and pepper to taste

Cut each asparagus spear in to three or four pieces. If the spears are very thick, cut at a diagonal. Blanch the asparagus in boiling salted water for two minutes, then drain and rinse with cold water.

Cut the beet into a small dice. Blanch in boiling water for four minutes, then rinse in cold water.

Chop the greens.

Cook the orzo according to the package directions, drain, rinse with cold water.

Stir together the reserved brine, the olive oil, herbs, salt and pepper. Toss with the orzo. Combine the remaining ingredients, except the feta. Add to the orzo and toss to combine. Divide into individual bowls. Crumble the feta cheese and sprinkle over the salad. Serves 3 or 4.


spinndiva said...


You have no idea how happy your comment has made me! Thank you very much! It made my day!

Nurit said...

I love the qoute but sometimes, with some family members, distnace is healthier.