I find orzo is a delicious alternative to traditional pasta or rice. It is very easy to cook with and any extra can be put into a pot, chilled and frozen. Adding some flavoured oil or pesto gives you a lovely snacking , hot or cold.
For a vegetarian option, omit the pancetta and replace with chopped mushroom or sun-dried tomatoes.
Vegetable and Pancetta Orzo Risotto
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 small red onion finely chopped
- 1 garlic clove finely chopped
- 1 courgette medium diced
- 100 g diced pancetta
- 150 g orzo
- 60 ml white wine or vermouth
- 300 g vegetable or chicken stock
- 50 ml single cream
- 2 tbsp frozen peas thawed
- 1 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
- Ground black pepper
- 75 g mozzarella or grated Parmesan
- Heat the olive oil in a large, deep frying pan over a low heat. Add the onions and sauté until soft.
- Add the courgette, garlic and pancetta. Sauté over a moderate heat until cooked.
- Add the orzo and stir with a wooden spoon for a couple of minutes.
- Add the wine or vermouth and stir, scraping the bottom of the pot with the wooden spoon until all of the alcohol has evaporated.
- Stir in the stock gradually and cook for 10 minutes before slowly adding the cream.
- When the orzo is cooked and all the liquid has been absorbed, add the peas and parley and season with pepper.
- Serve in bowls topped with shredded mozzarella or Parmesan.