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Monday, October 25, 2010

Chew on This | Orzo with Sauteed Garlic, Onions and Peppers

Orzo-it looks like rice, but it's not...it's pasta, rice shaped pasta... 

and we love it with sauteed garlic, onions, and peppers.  The colorful and rich flavor of this savory dish is the perfect side for beef, lamb, or chicken...and it's delicious warm or cold.

This is what you will need:
Orzo, (I use a 1 pound box of orzo it serves 8), olive oil, butter, onion, garlic, red, yellow, and green or orange peppers, toasted pignolias (pine nuts) oh, how I love them, garlic powder, onion powder, salt and pepper to taste. 

Grab a very large pot because you will need 5 quarts of water if you use a whole box of orzo. Add salt ‘cause it keeps the orzo from sticking together and of course it adds flavor.

Package directions say cook it for 11 minutes. I cook the orzo 13+ minutes, we prefer it tender not al dente… it's your choice.

While the orzo is cooking, chop the onions, garlic, and peppers. The colors are so vibrant.
I use just the red and green peppers during the holidays - so festive.

Add olive oil and butter to a saute pan and drop in the peppers, onions, and garlic.
Sauté until tender.

Add the garlic powder and onion powder now and stir it up.

While the orzo is cooking and the peppers and onions are being sauteed, you can toast your
pine nuts in 1T of olive oil. 

It doesn't take but a minute for them to become golden, sooo keep your eyes on them.
In my opinion, they make the dish really special-just love them.  When golden, remove from heat and set aside.

Time to drain the orzo and transfer it back to the big stock pot.

Pour the sautéed vegetables over the orzo and blend, blend, blend.

Now check the seasonings, if you need more salt and pepper or olive oil-I always do-add it

The awesome thing about this orzo recipe is that it is delicious hot or cold, it's healthy, and very colorful.  If it’s destination is a picnic you don’t have to worry 'cause it travels!!  Enjoy... and remember with orzo, it’s all about the flavor, so  don't be afraid to add some!


 Here is the recipe:

 Orzo with Sauteed Garlic, Onions, and Peppers

1  pound orzo
1 each, red, yellow, green or orange pepper, medium dice
1  large onion, diced
2 or 3 garlic cloves, very finely diced
1 t garlic powder
1 t onion powder
4 T olive oil
2 T butter
salt and pepper to taste
Optional:  3 T toasted pine nuts

Fill a large stock pot with water and add 1 T of salt.  Bring the water to a
rapid boil.  Add the orzo and stir.  Return to a rapid boil.   Cook uncovered, stirring occasionally 11-13 minutes or until desired tenderness. Drain well.  Return to the stock pot.

In a medium skillet, add 2T of butter and 2T of olive oil.  Saute the chopped peppers,
onions, and garlic until tender.

Combine the sauteed mixture with the well drained orzo.  Adjust the seasonings, add salt and pepper to taste.  Add the remaining 2 T of olive oil-or more to taste.  Toss and add the
optional pine nuts to the top and serve.

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