Take a cruise around the Mediterranean with this pasta dish that borrows from several seaside countries. Smoked paprika adds a hint of Spanish flair, while chickpeas steer things toward the Middle East. Orzo pasta represents Italy, but feta cheese holds it down for Greece. When everything’s tossed together, you’ve got yourself one gallivanting feast.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Mediterranean Spice Blend
Wash and dry all produce. Adjust rack to upper position and preheat oven to 450 degrees. Bring a medium pot of salted water to a boil. Halve tomatoes lengthwise, then chop. Halve, peel, and thinly slice shallot. Stir together vinegar and ½ tsp sugar in a medium bowl, then add shallot and tomato. Toss to coat, then season with salt and pepper.
Once water is boiling, add orzo to pot. Cook, stirring occasionally, until al dente, 6-8 minutes, then drain.
Meanwhile drain and rinse chickpeas, then pat dry with a paper towel. Place on a baking sheet and toss with a large drizzle of olive oil, Mediterranean spice, ½ tsp smoked paprika (we’ll use more later), salt, and pepper. Roast chickpeas in oven until toasted, 8-10 minutes.
Pick mint leaves from stems; discard stems. Roughly chop leaves. Return drained orzo to empty pot, then stir in mint and a drizzle of olive oil. Set aside.
In a small bowl, stir together sour cream, half the feta, ¼ tsp smoked paprika (you’ll have some left over), and 1 TBSP water. Season with salt and pepper. Once chickpeas are done roasting, remove from oven and stir into orzo in pot. Season with salt and pepper.
Add arugula and a drizzle of olive oil to bowl with shallot and tomatoes. Toss to coat. Divide orzo mixture between bowls. Mound arugula on top and sprinkle with remaining feta. Drizzle with dressing and serve.