Strawberry & Broccoli Orzo Pasta Salad with Lemon Poppy Seed Vinaigrette

I know strawberries and broccoli don’t seem like they’d pair well, but I loved them together in this pasta salad.  The strawberries provide the perfect touch of sweetness and the broccoli gives it a nice bite of crunch.  Tossed together with orzo pasta, slivered almonds and a zesty lemon poppy seed vinaigrette, this chilled pasta salad is light and refreshing and perfect for spring time. 
My husband would have preferred a little more dressing on it, so you might want to double the dressing recipe just in case you want a little more too.  Or if you don’t want to make the dressing you can use Briannas Poppy Seed Dressing , which is also really good on this.  I however prefer the vinaigrette and it just keeps it a little lighter.

I have no idea what we are doing for Easter (is it really in less than two weeks?), what we are eating, I don’t have the kiddo an Easter basket yet, or even any candy.  Well, except for Cadbury Mini Eggs, I’ve been buying a bag of those a week over the last month:)  It has just kind of crept up on me this year.  But I do think this salad would be a great addition to your Easter meal-whether it’s brunch, lunch, or dinner.

Strawberry & Broccoli Orzo Pasta Salad with Lemon Poppy Seed Vinaigrette
3/4 cup uncooked orzo pasta
1 cup fresh strawberry chunks or slices
3/4 cup chopped fresh broccoli
1/4 cup slivered almonds
salt and pepper to taste
Cook orzo pasta until al dente.  Drain and rinse with cold water to cool off.  
Toss in strawberry, broccoli, and slivered almonds.  
Drizzle with Lemon Poppy Seed Vinaigrette (recipe below) and toss until evenly coated.  
Season with salt and pepper.  Chill in refrigerator until ready to serve.
Lemon Poppy Seed Vinaigrette

1 Tbs fresh squeezed lemon juice
2 Tbs red wine vinegar
2 Tbs extra virgin Olive Oil
1 tsp poppy seeds
1 tsp sugar or honey
dash of salt and pepper
Mix all ingredients in a jar and shake until well combined.

Lemon Poppy Seed Vinaigrette slightly adapted from Iowa Girl Eats



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