Orzo Salad with Feta, Spinach and Mushrooms


In this riff on traditional pasta salad, orzo, spinach, celery and shiitake mushrooms get a twang from feta cheese and a red wine–lemon vinaigrette.

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  1. 2 1/4 cups orzo (15 ounces)
  2. 3 tablespoons pine nuts
  3. 1/3 cup plus 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  4. 6 ounces shiitake mushrooms, stemmed, caps cut into 1-inch pieces
  5. Salt and freshly ground pepper
  6. 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  7. 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  8. 2 cups spinach leaves (1 1/2 ounces), cut into thin strips
  9. 2 celery ribs, cut into 1/4-inch dice
  10. 9 ounces feta cheese, crumbled (1 1/2 cups)
  1. In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook the orzo until al dente. Drain and transfer to a large bowl; let cool.
  2. Meanwhile, in a medium skillet, toast the pine nuts over moderate heat, shaking the skillet, until the nuts are golden brown, about 3 minutes. Transfer to a plate. Add 2 tablespoons of the olive oil to the skillet. Add the shiitakes, season with salt and pepper and cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until tender and browned, about 5 minutes. Set aside.
  3. In a small bowl, whisk the vinegar, lemon juice and the remaining 1/2 cup of olive oil; add to the orzo to loosen it up.
  4. Add the spinach, celery, feta, pine nuts and mushrooms to the orzo and toss well. Season with salt and pepper. Serve at room temperature or lightly chilled.
Make Ahead
The orzo salad can be refrigerated overnight.