Tag Archives: orzo

Al Dente On The Side: CNY Regional Market Pasta Salad II

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My first CNY Regional Market Pasta Salad was gone in a matter of days. The Wife scarfed it down without much challenge.

This one has sat a little while, but not because it wasn’t good. There’s just a lot of it. Stupid orzo.

Orzo is a great pasta and probably my favorite shape. It’s also deceptively small. The little grains seem to explode in size when cooked. A seemingly small bag of pasta explodes like a family of rabbits.

The pasta came from my favorite haunt at the market — Flour City Pasta — and the tomatoes from Schrader Farms in the outdoor B aisle.

Continue reading Al Dente On The Side: CNY Regional Market Pasta Salad II

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Meatless Monday/Eat The Freezer: Spinach, tomato and orzo soup

NOTE: Remember when The Cosby Show or The Golden Girls would run a clip show? Welcome to my version of a clip show. Eat The Freezer is where we work through the frozen leftovers in my basement freezer.

NOTE II: The quart in the freezer was a little low on liquid, so I added a can of vegetable broth to bulk it up.

NOTE III: Since this ran, I’ve had friends say that they’ve swapped in fresh kale for the frozen spinach and have similar results.

Cold Monday night in October…can you think of a better night for soup? Let’s skip right to the details.

WHAT WORKED: Non-fresh ingredients. I would rather have used fresh spinach and fresh tomatoes, but the frozen and canned versions, respectively, lend themselves to both convenience and cooking. Score one for processed food. Continue reading Meatless Monday/Eat The Freezer: Spinach, tomato and orzo soup

Wednesday dinner: Baked orzo with eggplant and mozzarella

Mix it all you want. Leave that damn thing uncovered. It can stand for a week. Something is up with this recipe.

Even though I followed it to the letter, I ran into an issue with there being a ton of liquid in the baking dish when I spooned out portions for The Wife and I. The veggies at the bottom were swimming in the puddled stock at the bottom of my Pyrex dish.

I usually don’t have these problems with Smitten Kitchen recipes. They’re, for the most part, rock solid and easily attainable. I’m chalking this up to somewhere between operator error and a necessary adjustment in the amount of stock used. Continue reading Wednesday dinner: Baked orzo with eggplant and mozzarella

Meatless Monday: Spinach, tomato and orzo soup

Cold Monday night in October…can you think of a better night for soup? Let’s skip right to the details.

WHAT WORKED: Non-fresh ingredients. I would rather have used fresh spinach and fresh tomatoes, but the frozen and canned versions, respectively, lend themselves to both convenience and cooking. Score one for processed food.

WHAT DIDN’T: I’m not sure. I flew by the seat of my pants on this one. The recipe I found online was terrible, so I had to patch something together on the run.

WHAT DID THE WIFE SAY: Not much. She kept sticking her face in the pot and saying, “That smells good.”

WILL IT MAKE ANOTHER APPEARANCE: Very likely. There are two quarts of leftovers in the freezer. Continue reading Meatless Monday: Spinach, tomato and orzo soup

Saturday dinner: Pan-fried shrimp with roasted tomato orzotto

“I feel like this is the last chance.”

There was a forlorn tone to The Wife’s voice as she realized that Saturday evening dinners for the next couple of weeks would likely be in the form of takeout. September means Walk To End Alzheimer’s fundraisers every Saturday and Sunday. My Saturday mornings start sometime between 4 and 6 during Walk season. After shower and nap, I’m not good for much more than giving a delivery address before having to wake up at 6 or so the next morning.

With that in mind, Saturday’s trip to the CNY Regional Market was more than just produce. I was on the hunt for a main dish. One of the cool parts of the market is that more and more animal farms are bringing their beef, pork and other meats for sale. I’ve picked up steaks and bacon, with no complaint. Today, I went in another direction: fish.  Continue reading Saturday dinner: Pan-fried shrimp with roasted tomato orzotto

Monday dinner: Lemon-basil orzotto with chicken

This is a short week here for us. My last day of work is Thursday. Friday is a rest day and then we start heading south on Saturday. We’re skipping North Carolina’s Outer Banks in favor of the much shorter drive to Rehoboth Beach, Del. Motion sickness and fatigue from the marathon drive won out. Delaware is only about six hours away, or about half of the drive.

That means I’m jamming five days of work into four, which means dinners are about speed this week. Traditionally, speed and risotto don’t collide in the same sentence, but this one isn’t bad; from prep to table in about 45 minutes. Continue reading Monday dinner: Lemon-basil orzotto with chicken

Thursday dinner: Poached chicken with orzo and pomegranate

The concept of a pomegranate is nice. Think about it…a superfood that is a sweet, tangy fruit, loaded with mysterious antioxidants that cure cancer, prevent Alzheimer’s and bring us peace in our time.

The reality is that pomegranates suck. Forget about the half hour it took to peel the damn seeds out of the fruit after soaking for the previous hour. It was the 20 minutes of seek-and-destroy, rooting around the kitchen for red juice stains and seeds that managed to fly six or seven feet from where I was working. Just when I thought I was finished, The Wife would chime in with, “Jared, there’s pomegranate everywhere.” Continue reading Thursday dinner: Poached chicken with orzo and pomegranate

Thursday dinner: Orzo risotto with chicken thighs and spring vegetables

Cooking dinner on Thursdays stinks, even when I feel well (and I don’t). I would just assume tonight be a takeout evening. I usually plan one takeout/FFY (fend for yourself) evening during the workweek, mostly out of exhaustion/ laziness. Unfortunately, that was Monday night. The Wife decided to go to a union meeting, where they discussed bankrupting local taxpayers, but came home early. My planned FFY evening turned into a leftover buffet. By Thursday, I’m beat and cooking seems more like a chore. Add a little intestinal distress to the mixture, and I would have rather ordered pizza. Continue reading Thursday dinner: Orzo risotto with chicken thighs and spring vegetables