Greek or (Greek-inspired) cuisine has got to be in my top 3. This is not surprising with my (very) Southern-Italian roots. Their meals which often include lemon, garlic, dill, oregano, grilled fish and meat are clean-tasting. Many of their dishes are healthy in fact, incorporating good fats, and vitamin-rich vegetables such as tomatoes and leafy greens. They also use cinnamon at times, which has been said to be nature’s miracle spice. The ever-popular, tangy and rich Greek yogurt cannot be overlooked for its benefits either. Then of course there are the very richly-delicious dishes like Mousaka and Pastitsio that cannot be ignored but eaten sparingly if watching your waist-line. I’m still learning about the cuisine and loving every minute. Have I got you running to your nearest Greek restaurant yet!? Mine is Milos (Montreal) but that’s a whole other post.
Here is a Greek-inspired & healthy recipe, courtesy of Bobby Flay. I made it today exactly as the recipe specifies except that I did not have Orzo so I used Seme di Melone pasta (melon seed) which is very similar in size and shape. It was delicious!
Grilled Shrimp over Greek Orzo Salad with Dill-Dijon Vinaigrette
3/4 pound orzo, cooked
1 large cucumber, seeded, quartered lengthwise, and sliced
3 green onions, thinly sliced
1 pint grape tomatoes, halved
1/4 cup chopped fresh dill, plus extra for garnish
1/4 cup white wine vinegar
3 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1/2 cup olive oil, plus additional for brushing shrimp
Salt and freshly ground pepper
3/4 pound feta cheese, crumbled
16 medium shrimp, peeled and de-veined
Combine orzo, cucumber, green onions, and tomatoes in a large bowl. Place dill, vinegar, and mustard in a blender and blend until smooth. With the motor running, slowly add the olive oil and blend until emulsified. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Pour the vinaigrette over the orzo mixture and stir well to combine. Gently fold in the feta cheese.
Heat grill to high. Brush shrimp with oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill for approximately 2 minutes per side or until just cooked through. Divide orzo salad among 4 take-out containers or plates and top with 4 shrimp. Garnish with additional dill.