Archive for the ‘Meatless’ Category

Curry Vegetable Orzo

Wednesday, March 3rd, 2010

Warning:  This post contains curry. Hence the name.

Curry seems to be a love it or hate it spice.  I love it.  You might not.  Or, maybe you are an enigma, that neither loves nor hates curry.  I will say that the curry in this dish is very subtle as it only uses 1 teaspoon for the whole entire recipe.  If you don’t like it, you have my permission to leave it out.  You don’t have permission to yell at me when the recipe isn’t as good anymore, though.  😉

The great thing about this recipe is that it is totally flexible as far as the veggies go. In the summer when the produce department is plentiful and glorious (notice I didn’t say my vegetable garden, which is rarely plentiful or glorious), I use different vegetables in this, depending on what looks good at the time. I LOVE it with asparagus, so try adding some of that if you’re so inclined. If not, lets just do this thing!

What to gather: Olive oil, garlic, shallots, zucchini, carrots, curry powder (JUST DO IT), vegetable stock, orzo, Parmesan cheese, parsley, frozen peas (pretend they’re there), salt and pepper (this time in a stainless steel bowl so that the dog doesn’t chew it up immediately following this post).

We’re going to start by cutting all our vegetables first, since they all get added to the pot at the same time. Once we have that done, the rest is a cinch! (Yes, I just used the word cinch. Yes, I’m 108 years old.)

Peel, and then shred some carrots. I only ended up using 2 of the 4 I pulled out. And yes, I used this archaic thing on which to shred them. And yes, I do in fact own a food processor. I just don’t really know how to use it and it seems like a lot of clean up just to shred a couple carrots. I gave my shreds a rough dice at the end because I don’t want big chunks of carrot, but don’t feel obligated to do the same. It’s not important to the end game.

Chop some zucchini. I cut it into strips and then diced, but again, you can chop it however it makes you happy.

Now a couple shallots. A shallot is more or less a small, sweet, mild onion, so you could absolutely substitute onion if you can’t find / don’t want / do not believe me about shallots.

And finally, the garlic. You can use your garlic press, I won’t tell.

To the stove, jeeves! Not that I need a ride to the stove, it hasn’t quite come to that. Yet. Drizzle the olive oil into the hot pan.

And dump in all that stuff we just chopped. Just dump it on in there. Throw caution to the wind.

Saute for about 5 minutes, or until everything softens up. It doesn’t have to be completely cooked since we have a ways to go, just softened.

Add the cumin (DO IT!) and the broth and bring to a boil.

Now the orzo, and again bring to a boil. Then, lower the heat, cover, and walk away for 10 minutes while the orzo cooks. You can use this time to clean up the huge mess you’ve made, start knitting a blanket or making a pot of coffee. Or, better yet, you can get the final 3 ingredients ready to go.

Shred some Parmesan cheese. This time, using an even smaller archaic instrument.

Chop up some flat leaf parsley.

And dig the peas out of the bottom of the freezer. Once the orzo has reached the desired state of doneness (doneness?), add the peas, parsley and orzo to the pan. No need to thaw the peas, they’ll heat up in a few stirs while you’re combining all this.

Season with salt and pepper, and you’re done!

I love this stuff.

Curry Vegetable Orzo

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
3 cloves garlic, chopped
2 shallots, chopped
1 small zucchini, chopped
1 cup shredded carrots, chopped
1 teaspoon curry powder
3 cups vegetable stock
1 cup orzo pasta
1/2 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
3 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley
1 cup frozen peas
Salt and pepper

Heat a medium skillet over medium high heat. Add extra-virgin olive oil, 2 turns of the pan in a slow stream. Add garlic, shallots, zucchini and carrots. Sauté 5 minutes. Add curry and vegetable stock, and bring to a boil. Add orzo and bring to a boil. Cover and reduce heat to medium. Cook, stirring occasionally until pasta absorbs the liquid and is al dente in texture, 10 minutes. Uncover and stir in cheese, parsley and peas. Season with salt and pepper, to your taste.

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