Now that I am home with my girls, I have really been enjoying cooking for them and my husband (of course!) so I have been constantly looking for quick and easy dishes, especially for lunch. Before I had kids, I would buy a lot of instant pasta. You know, the ones with everything already made and frozen – including the sauce- and all you do is heat it up in a skillet or pan? Let me just say that I am not frowning on instant pasta (frozen or non-frozen) at all and I think that Trader Joe’s has a lot of great, yummy ones. But, there has to be a “but”- now that I have so many easy, quick recipes at my finger tips, I’d much rather cook for my family when I can.
Pasta. Dude, it’s so easy. And you can throw so many different veggies in there and make so many different kinds of sauces.. it’s really versatile and again- really quick and easy. This dish took me about 20-25 minutes and if you do these things- you are set and ready to cook at any time:
- Keep your pantry stocked with a variety of pasta and chicken broth (I always make sure I have at least 2 boxes of chicken broth)
- Keep your fridge stocked with a variety of fresh veggies like: mushrooms, tomatoes, spinach, bell peppers, fresh herbs etc
- Keep your fridge stocked with cheese of some sort. You can’t go wrong with parmesan and I highly recommend grating the cheese on your own so buy those cheese wedges and not the pre-grated ones. You get little to no flavor with the pre-grated ones.
- Make sure you always have onions (red and white or yellow), garlic (or crushed garlic), olive oil and balsamic vinegar on hand
So, here’s a fantastic tasting, super fast (in about 25 minutes) Orzo recipe and you could really use any kind of pasta in this dish. Hope you give this one a try! Enjoy!
Summer Orzo with Peas and Mushrooms
- 3- 4 cups chicken broth
- 1 pound orzo pasta
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 1 onion, chopped
- 8 ounces mushrooms, sliced
- 1 cup frozen peas, thawed
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
- Freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- Chopped Green onion to sprinkle on top (optional)
- Bring the chicken broth to a boil over medium-high heat in a medium saucepan. Add the orzo and cook until almost tender, about 7-8 minutes. Remove from heat. Set aside.
- Meanwhile, melt the butter over medium heat in a medium skillet. Add the onions and saute until tender, about 2-3 minutes. Add the mushrooms and continue to saute until the mushrooms are beginning to turn golden around the edges, about 4-5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
- Add the peas and the orzo mixture to the skillet. Mix well and cook for another 3-4 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
- Serve and top with freshly grated parmesan cheese.
This recipe was adapted from Giada’s. . but she made a baked Orzo with Fontina cheese and peas. Her recipe is heavier and requires baking so it’s takes longer but I am sure it’s divine. To see Giada’s recipe, click here.