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Mediterranean Orzo Pilaf

This image courtesy of Joseph DeLeo

I love risotto for its creaminess—but not on a weeknight. It just doesn’t work unless you stand over it like a schoolmarm. Orzo, on the other hand, is nearly as creamy and a lot less fussy. And with the addition in step 2 of cooked shrimp or scallops, you could turn it into a main dish that will stick to your ribs.

NotesTotal time: 25 minutes

Makes4 to 6 Servings

Preparation Time15 min

Preparation Time - Text15 minutes

CostModerate

Easy

Total Timeunder 30 minutes

One Pot MealYes

OccasionBuffet, Cooking for a date

Recipe Courseside dish

Mealdinner

Taste and Textureherby, light

Type of Dishdry pasta

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped (about ½ cup)
  • 1 garlic clove, minced (about 1 teaspoon)
  • 2½ cups canned chicken broth or homemade Chicken Stock
  • 8 ounces orzo
  • One 6½-ounce jar marinated artichoke hearts, drained and coarsely chopped
  • 1/3 cup pitted, brine-cured olives such as kalamata, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons rinsed, dried, and chopped fresh dill
  • ½ teaspoon grated lemon zest
  • Kosher salt and freshly milled black pepper

Instructions

  1. Heat the oil in a large skillet over high heat until hot. Reduce the heat to medium; add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook 1 minute. Stir in the chicken broth and orzo; bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to low and simmer, stirring occasionally, until all the liquid has been absorbed and the orzo is tender, 8 to 10 minutes.

  2. Stir in the artichoke hearts, olives, dill, lemon zest, and salt and pepper to taste. Cook until the artichokes are heated through, about 1 minute.

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