Tomato, Orzo & Chickpea Salad

June 18, 2011

Author Notes: I love making pasta with a raw sauce of fresh tomatoes and a few other ingredients. I took the same concept and created this pasta salad adding a few other ingredients which can withstand the heat. Served cold or at "picnic" temperature it's an inexpensive great side or a wonderful vegetarian meal and can easily be doubled to serve a big crowd.
Marinating the tomatoes for 2 to 3 hours creates the dressing.

Food52 Review: This was nice and easy to pull off. I don't think 3 hours for the tomatoes is totally necessary but I like when it has some time to sit and come together. In the interest of time, I might put everything all together and then let it sit for 2 to 3 hours. I wish it had something a little sweet in it—I liked it much better once I had added a tsp of honey. It just rounded it out a little. But it might not be needed a little later in the summer if the tomatoes were a little riper. Stephanie Bourgeois

Makes: about 8 cups
Prep time: 3 hrs
Cook time: 15 min


  • 4 cups seeded diced tomatoes
  • 1 to 2 cloves garlic crushed in a garlic press
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 cups cooked and rinsed garbanzo beans (or one 14-15 ounce can, drained and rinsed)
  • 1 cup uncooked orzo
  • 1 cup diced English cucumber
  • 1/2 cup sliced Kalamata olives
  • 1/2 cup chopped flat leaf parsley
  • 1/4 cup sliced fresh basil leaves
  • 1 pinch Salt and pepper to taste
In This Recipe


  1. In a medium bowl combine the tomatoes, garlic, olive oil, red wine vinegar, crushed red pepper, 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Park the mixture on the counter for 2 to 3 hours.
  2. Cook the pasta according to package directions. Drain and rinse.
  3. After the 2 to 3 hours "marinating" time, combine the tomatoes, garbanzo beans, cucumber, orzo and olives. Stir in the parsley and basil. Re-season with salt and pepper. Chill until ready to take to the picnic.

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