Test Kitchen

Shrimp & Fresh Kielbasa over Orzo Salad

If you don’t know it already, we love summer barbecues. I have dabbled in shish-kabobs but never liked the way the vegetables would be raw in the center the lack of variety of flavors in most mixes. We decided to do a pool party BBQ in the middle of the summer when all of the houseterns are back at their homes, so I wanted an easy to cook and serve meal for a big crowd.

These kabobs mix a tasty mustard, parmesan and basil marinated shrimp with a freshly made kielbasa and the veggies are mixed into the orzo that you serve the grilled shrimp/kielbasa mix.

Makes 12

Ingredients for the Kabobs

  • 4 kielbasa, freshly made from a butcher, they look more like sausages
  • 36 fresh local large peeled and deveined shrimp, tail on
  • 1 cup dijon mustard
  • 1/2 cup parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup fresh basil, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon of red pepper flakes
  • 1 teaspoon of kosher salt, 1/2 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper

Ingredients for Orzo Salad

  • 1 pound of orzo pasta
  • 2 red bell peppers, seeded and rough chopped
  • 2 large red onions, peeled and rough chopped
  • 1 cup lemon juice, freshly squeezed
  • 1 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup basil, rough to finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup parmasean cheese
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Making the Kabobs

  • Take either metal or large wooden skewers that have been soaked in water for at least and hour and set them aside
  • In a large bowl whisk the mustard, parmesan, olive oil, basil, red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper, mix in the shrimp and marinate for 2 hours
  • Bake the kielbasa at 350 for 15 minutes and let cool, cut in half lenghwise then into thirds, so when you finish them off with the quick grilling of the shrimp, they will not keep the shrimp from touching the grill
  • Take the skewer and add a shrimp, then kielbasa, shrimp, kielbasa and shrimp and put on a baking sheet, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate until it is time to grill

Making the Orzo Salad

  • Make the dressing by whisking together the olive oil, lemon juice, basil, parmesan cheese, salt and pepper
  • Cook the orzo al dente and put in a large bowl, add the dressing and let mix
  • Turn the oven to 400, take a large baking sheet and spread the chopped red peppers and onions, drizzle olive oil and season with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, roast for 15 minutes then add to pasta mix, spread out on a large serving dish and cover with plastic wrap until serving

It’s Grilling Time

  • Turn the grill on high, shut the lid and wait for 15 minutes
  • Put the kabobs on for 3-4 minutes each side, place on the pasta dish with the wrap removed and serve

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