A summer-to-fall pasta salad hits a new level with sweet roasted corn, zucchini and a creamy lime dressing spiked with chile powder. Fresh cilantro brings brightness and salty pecorino adds the final touch. I made this as a party side, and then mixed in the leftovers with fresh arugula for a salad the next day. Delicious!
Roasted Orzo Salad with Corn & Zucchini
- 4 ears of corn, shucked
- 1 small zucchini, cut into approx ⅛ slices
- ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
- Kosher salt, to taste
- Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- ½ pound orzo
- ¼ cup light mayonnaise
- 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
- 1 tablespoon minced shallot
- ½ teaspoon ancho chile powder
- 1 ½ cups coarsely chopped cilantro
- Shaved pecorino or parmesan, optional, for garnish
- 2 green onions, chopped, for garnish
Prepare your oven for roasting. Preheat to approximately 375ºF, varying by oven. In a large bowl, toss the corn and zucchini with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Alternately, you can grill the vegetables over moderate heat. Roast or grill until slightly charred and crisp-tender, about 10 minutes for the zucchini and 15 minutes for the corn, again, varying by oven. Transfer to a cutting board and let cool. Cut the kernels off the corn and cut the zucchini into half-moons. Transfer to a large bowl.
Meanwhile, in a large saucepan of salted boiling water, cook the orzo until al dente. Drain and rinse under cold water to cool. Drain well and spread the orzo out on a baking sheet; pat dry with paper towels.
In a large bowl, whisk the mayonnaise with the remaining 3 tablespoons of olive oil and the lime juice, shallot, chile powder and ½ cup of the cilantro; season with salt and pepper. Add the orzo, corn, zucchini and the remaining chopped cilantro and mix well. Transfer to a platter. Using a vegetable peeler, shave the cheese all over the top, garnish with green onions, and serve.