Larry Crowe, Associated Press
Orzo is an Italian word meaning "barley" and is sometimes called Italian rice, although it is wheat. In addition to pasta salad, it can be used to make soups.
This simple dish is a Mediterranean take on pasta salad, blending ricelike orzo pasta with chickpeas and goat cheese. It can be served warm or at room temperature. For an attractive presentation, look for multicolored orzo.

ORZO WITH CHICKPEAS, GOAT CHEESE AND OREGANO

Start to finish: 15 minutes

Servings: 4

1 1/2 cups orzo (about 9 ounces)

1/4 cup olive oil

3 tablespoons lemon juice

1 clove garlic, minced

15-ounce can chickpeas, drained and rinsed

2 tablespoons chopped fresh oregano

Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

5-ounce log goat cheese, crumbled

Bring a large saucepan of lightly salted water to a boil. Add orzo and cook, stirring occasionally, until just tender, about 8 minutes. Drain the orzo and set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk together the olive oil, lemon juice and garlic. Add the chickpeas, orzo and oregano. Toss to combine. Season with salt and pepper. Gently stir in the goat cheese. It can be served warm or at room temperature. — Recipe from the June 2008 issue of Bon Appetit magazine