I like buying different types of pasta and trying to make different things with them. One of the easiest pastas to cook with is definitely orzo.
Orzo, also known as risoni ("big rice" in Italian) is a type of short pasta that is shaped like a large grain of rice. It is usually used in soups, as part of a salad or baked in casseroles.
I wanted to cook the orzo in a creamy sauce but I did not have any cream in the fridge, so I used the next best thing - cream of chicken soup.
The first step was to brown the chicken. I used chicken breast because they are a lot easier to slice than chicken thighs. The chicken was browned in a little extra virgin olive oil in batches and placed on some kitchen towels to drain after. The chicken need not be cooked through as they would be cooked again later.
In a large skillet, I browned the diced onion in a little olive oil until the onion became soft and translucent. The garlic was added and I continued stirring for about 30 seconds. I added the sliced mushrooms and continued cooking until the mushrooms were cooked down before the chicken and orzo were added.
I stirred the mixture so that the orzo was coated with the oil. Then I added a can of cream of chicken (you can also use cream of mushroom), water and frozen peas. Everything was given a good stir so that they were well-combined.
I brought the mixture to a boil, then turned the heat down and simmered the mixture, covered, for about 15 minutes. It is important that you give the mixture a stir every so often. If the orzo starts to stick to the bottom of the pan, add a little more water.
When the orzo was cooked, I added chopped tomatoes, salt and coarsely grounded black pepper and dinner was ready to be served.
This is a simple, one-pot meal.
But it tastes fantastic!
Orzo with chicken, mushroom and peas (Serves 4)
Adapted from cookwithcampbell's
500g boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into strips
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp grounded black pepper
1/2 tsp corn flour
300g button mushrooms, sliced
1/2 white onion, finely diced
2 tsp garlic, minced
1 can (10oz) cream of chicken soup
1 1/2 cup water
1 1/2 cup orzo
1 cup frozen peas
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
1/4 tsp salt, to taste
2 tomatoes, diced
1. Season chicken with salt, pepper and corn flour. Cook chicken, in batches, until well browned in heated oil at medium-high heat in large skillet. Drain on kitchen towel and set aside.
2. Cook onions for about 3-4 minutes until they are soft and translucent. Add garlic and saute for another 30 seconds.
3. Add mushrooms and cook until they have become soft.
4. Put chicken back into the skillet, add orzo. Stir to coat the orzo with the oil.
5. Add cream of chicken, peas and water. Stir to combine. Cover, bring to boil then turn down the heat and simmer for about 15 minutes, or until orzo is cooked. Stir often.
6. Once cooked, add chopped tomato and salt and pepper. Stir to combine.
7. Serve hot.