For the dressing

  • 1 lemon zested
  • juice from 1 lemon
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup olive oil

For the orzo

  • 1 lb Certified SC Grown asparagus
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric
  • 1 1/2 cup dry orzo pasta
  • 1/4 cup fresh Parsley chopped

Instructions

Dressing

  1. Place the lemon zest, juice, garlic, salt, and pepper in a deep medium bowl.
  2. Add oil and whisk until it emulsifies a bit. Set aside.

Orzo

  1. Snap the end pieces off the asparagus and lay the asparagus stalks in a baking dish, 9×13 inch. Pour boiling water over the asparagus (just enough to cover it), cover dish with plastic wrap and let sit until the water is warm to the touch. Drain water and cut the asparagus stalks into 2 inch pieces.
  2. Place the chicken broth and water in a large pot and bring to a boil. Add the salt and turmeric and bring back to a boil. Add the orzo and cook until tender, about 10 minutes.
  3. Drain orzo, but do not rinse it. Place the hot orzo in a large bowl, add the asparagus and parsley. Whisk the dressing if needed and pour it over the salad. Mix well.
  4. Top with butter if preferred.

Ag Fact: Asparagus is considered a “renewed crop” in South Carolina, commercially grown as early as the 1890’s.