Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Orzo Love.

Orzo is a favourite around the C&C household. It's probably one of Chris' favourites - right up there with chicken pot pie, steak and homemade soups. 

I tried orzo for the first time many years ago. By 'tried' I mean that my mom had Orzo for dinner at Babs' for dinner, called me to tell me that she had it and how she thought it was cooked. So, I thought that I would give it a try - many years later it is still something that I love to cook. 

I use a couple of different ways: Greek orzo salad - one of my favourite summer salads; as a side dish with just green onion; and then as a main dish like tonight. 

If you've never tried orzo, but you like pasta, then you'll like this. You can find it in your pasta aisle, and if you go to specialty stores, you can find it in vegetable flavours - which are also really good. It cooks just like pasta. Give it a try - I think that you'll really like it.

Orzo Solo

2 cups of dry orzo - boiled just like you would pasta
3 boneless skinless chicken breasts - cooked and cut into either thin slices or cubes - whatever you like
2 cups sliced fresh mushrooms
2 cups fresh tomatoes - tonight's recipe had strawberry tomatoes that were picked up on the weekend at the Root Cellar - they were cut in half 
Fresh spinach
1 onion - chopped
3 cloves of garlic - minced
1/2 cup of fresh parmesan cheese
2 cups of chicken stock

It seems like a lot of ingredients - but don't worry - it's a super easy dish that layers as you go. 

Saute the onion in olive oil and a pinch of kosher in a large skillet - for about 7 minutes or when it becomes translucent. Then add your garlic - keep an eye on your skillet so that it doesn't burn. Add your chopped mushrooms and coat them in the onion and garlic - saute for about 1 minute. Then add your cooked orzo that has been drained. Coat all of the orzo in the onion and garlic and mushrooms.  Then add the chicken stock - over medium heat, stir generously so that the orzo is able to start to absorb the stock. Add the tomatoes and spinach. Reduce the heat to medium-low and continue to stir to ensure that the orzo is still absorbing the stock. Add any fresh or dried herbs that you like - fresh basil or dried oregano are both really nice.

Once the orzo has soaked in all of the stock's goodness - it is ready to serve. Add the cheese to the orzo and stir it all in - you may want a little more to top off the dish once it is served. 

And that's it. Yum.

Chris rated this a 5!

It's hard to believe that August is over. It came and went way too fast. I miss it already. September has started out with promise - with a bang - let's hope that high, positive energy remains - I'm sure that we could all use a little firecracker in our pants from time to time.
Long day - ready to rest my weary eyes. Hump day is almost here - embrace it. 


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