Orzo with radicchio, broccolini and Feta
I haven’t spent much time in the kitchen this week. I have discovered the Apex Trail leading up to the top of Knox Mountain and got completely hooked on the hike and the area and have been going there every day. I hope this enthusiasm continues through the summer and fall because it is such a good workout in a gorgeous setting with spectacular Okanagan views. I do pack a lunch, enjoy it on top of the mountain and continue hiking along one of the many trails in the area before heading down while my legs still carry me and my light pack.
Of course, while I hike, food is never too far from my mind and as I was descending, a dish for dinner was formulating in my mind. It turned out to be a nice vegetarian style warm pasta “salad” that we can have for an early dinner tonight. Orzo is a rice shaped pasta that cooks quickly and makes it easy to put a dish together in a hurry. Not that I was in a rush but, all the same. I also wanted to use what I had in the fridge rather than run out and come back with the usual loads and loads of groceries (I can’t resist beautiful produce) and try to find place for them in an already full fridge. We are going to a special dinner in the vineyard on Sunday, catered by the fantastic local catering company Joy road Catering, so not much cooking will happen this weekend. Also Saturday is Farmers Market day and I know I will be going there, so I’d better make room in the fridge.
I made the dish with and without cheese: vegan for me, with feta cheese for my husband. We love simple pasta with cheese and thought the feta would be nice in this dish. Since the cheese is of Greek origin I added Greek oregano that is growing in abundance on my rooftop patio. Any other herb should work just fine.
The mizithra cheese is quite salty so don’t add too much salt.
Well, that’s all, sweet and simple. I hope you enjoy.
1 cup orzo
2 tablespoon olive oil
1 bunch broccolini, chopped
2 king oyster mushrooms, chopped (or another variety)
2 slender carrots, sliced thinly
1/2 small radicchio, shredded
A small handful fresh oregano leaves
1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
Bring a pot of water to a boil, add 1 teaspoon coarse salt and the orzo. Cook until the orzo is done, about 5 minutes. Drain well and place in a bowl.
Heat the olive oil in a skillet, add the chopped broccolini and a sprinkling of coarse salt (not too much) and cook, stirring frequently until it is cooked through. You can add a little water, a couple of tablespoons at a time, if the skillet seems dry.
When the broccolini is ready (I like it somewhat crisp) remove and add to the orzo.
Add a little more oil to the skillet and add the mushrooms and carrots. Cook for a couple of minutes, then add the shredded radicchio. Keep stirring and cooking for 2 more minutes or so, then remove from heat and add to the orzo.
Stir the orzo with the remaining ingredients: oregano add the cheese.
Taste and adjust the seasoning. You can add a final drizzle of olive oil over before serving.