Monday, June 9, 2014

Springy Orzo

This orzo was a huge hit! It's hearty and flavorful.

(makes 9 1-cup servings)
12 oz orzo
1 bunch of asparagus, cut into small pieces
1 TBS olive oil
1 small onion
1 leek, cleaned carefully (they get dirt in the layers somehow) and diced
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 cup of mushrooms, diced
14 oz can of artichoke hearts in brine (drained and rinsed, then torn into smaller bits)
1 lemon, zested and juiced (you'll need about 1.5 teaspoons of zest and about 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice)
1/2 cup sun dried tomatoes in oil (separated into two 1/4 cup portions)
3 cloves garlic
1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped finely
1/4 cup nutritional yeast (optional, but it adds a nice cheesiness)
1/2 cup pine nuts, toasted
Salt to taste (if you have mushroom salt, I HIGHLY recommend using it here)
Pepper to taste

Cook the orzo and steam the asparagus while you prepare the other vegetables. When the orzo is fully cooked, stir in 1/4 cup of sun dried tomatoes in oil. This keeps the orzo from clumping.

Place the olive oil in the pan, then add the leek, onion, and pepper. Cook until softened, about 8 minutes, then add the mushrooms, artichokes, garlic, and 1/4 cup of the sun dried tomatoes. Once the asparagus has softened from the steaming, add the asparagus to the pan. Add the cooked orzo to the pan along with the parsley, 1/4 cup lemon juice, and 1.5 teaspoons of zest. Let the flavors blend. Add in nutritional yeast, salt, and pepper, and top with a portion of the pine nuts (scant one tablespoon).

I served with a fun new (to me) green called mache. It's nice and nutty and flavorful. I used a little olive oil, a little of the lemon juice, and a bit of garlic to make a very simple dressing for it, and it turned out great.

Nutrition Facts (for the orzo)
Serving Size 1/9 of the recipe (1 cup)
Calories 249
Total Fat 7.5g
Sodium 496mg
Potassium 156.2mg
Carbohydrates 38.2g
Dietary Fiber 5.5g
Sugars 5.8g
Protein 7.3g
Vitamin A 7% • Vitamin C 56% Calcium 4% • Iron 24%

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