Since it is Friday during Lent I thought I would share one of my favorite “no meat” recipes if you, like me, are struggling to find something new to eat. This makes a great lunch or with the addition of some grilled shrimp an even better dinner. I plan on making it today for me and The Elder A to have for lunch. Sorry for no pictures with this one, but since I haven’t made it yet today there are none to take, plus whenever I make this dish it never lasts long enough to snap any. I promise I will post pics later. Happy Friday and have a blessed weekend.
Pesto orzo with pine nuts and mushrooms
1-2 cups of uncooked orzo, the tiny little grain like Italian pasta. (fun fact of the day, Orzo is Italian for barley)
3-4 Portobello mushroom caps, cleaned and finely chopped (you can add more or less to your liking)
1 cup of raw pine nuts
Homemade or your fav store bought pesto (I will do a post on my pesto recipe later, promise)
Olive oil to coat the sauté pan
Bring a medium pot of water to a rapid bowl adding a pinch of salt to the water once boiling. Add the orzo to the water and return to a rapid boil. Boil for 9-11 minutes until ‘Al dente’ stage is reached.
While the orzo cooks heat a small sauté pan over medium heat. Coat the pan with olive oil and once hot add the chopped mushrooms. Sauté just until tender, beware mushrooms can go from tender to mush in a matter of minutes so watch these closely. It only takes a minute or two. Once tender remove from heat and transfer to a mixing bowl and return pan to heat. Re-coat the pan with olive oil if necessary and add the pine nuts. Toast the pine nuts until golden brown. Again as with the mushrooms, the pine nuts can go from golden to slap burnt in seconds (slap burnt is a technical Southern cooking term BTW). When toasted remove from heat and add to the bowl with the mushrooms. You are now done with the sauté pan.
The orzo should be done by this time so drain it as you would any other pasta but DO NOT RINSE. Transfer the orzo into the same bowl with the mushrooms and pine nuts. Now take your pesto and spoon over the mixture in small increments stirring to mix/coat thoroughly. The heat from the orzo, mushrooms and nuts will “loosen” the pesto so don’t add too much all at once, you can always add more but you can’t take it back out. Once you happy with the amount of pesto mixed in you are done!! Enjoy as a light lunch or add shrimp, and if it’s not Friday during Lent, grilled chicken or even sausage for a heartier meal. Another fun addition is crumbled Feta cheese at the end, right before serving.
Store in the fridge, if it isn’t all eaten, for 3-5 days. If you have any questions about this recipe feel free to contact me via the comments or email. Thanks for visiting.