Orzo with Greek tomato sauce

all ingredientsThis has been a good week for impulse buys. During a Kroger run, I noticed a small package of orzo— with the charming words “gluten-free” on it. Another Greek favorite that I’ve missed after leaving wheat behind, I scooped it up immediately.

Now, I had a mission: re-create the orzo I’ve had in various restaurants in Greektown. I used this blogger’s recipe for inspiration. Made with corn and rice, this gluten-free orzo has the same consistency as its gluten-y cousin, and soaks up the flavors of tomato sauce perfectly.

I tried to get fancy and make my own tomato sauce. While I did use fresh tomatoes, I supplemented with a bit of canned sauce as well. Winter tomatoes just lack that certain tomato-y flavor this dish needs. It’s up to you if you want to try sauce from scratch, or just go with what is simpler.

Orzo is about the same size as rice, but when cooked, it has a soft, almost velvety texture. When it’s cooked completely, it should almost melt in your mouth.

orzo

Ingredients

3 cloves of garlic, minced

2 tablespoons chopped black olives

2 tablespoons red wine

4-5 ripe tomatoes

1/2 cup tomato sauce (optional)

1 tbsp oregano

1 tsp parsley

1 cup orzo

3 cups water

1 tablespoon olive oil

salt and pepper to taste

tomatoes

For tomato sauce (skip if using only sauce from a can)

1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Make sure you have a bowl full of ice water handy

2. Add the tomatoes, and let them sit in the boiling water for about 30-45 seconds.

3. With a slotted spoon, scoop the tomatoes out of the boiling water and dunk them in the icy water.

4. The skins of the tomatoes should crack, and peel off easily. (Save ‘em if you make homemade vegetable stock.)

5.Chop off the hard stem, and squeeze out the tomato seeds and juice. Don’t worry about getting every last seed out.

6. Dice the tomatoes into quarters. Add them to a pan with heated olive oil, and simmer for about a half hour. The tomatoes will slowly start to break down.

Naked tomatoes.

Naked tomatoes.

Instructions, for sauce and orzo

1. Mince the garlic and add it to warm olive oil.

2. Saute for 30 seconds before adding the tomato sauce (fresh or canned).

3. Add all the other ingredients: olives, spices and wine.

4. Simmer for a minute or two, giving the wine time to cook off.

5. Add the orzo, and let simmer for another five minutes.

6. If you have the tomato sauce can handy, use it to add three cups of water to the orzo.

7. Let simmer on verrrrry low heat for 35-45 minutes.

8. If you’re not using a low stick pan, stir it frequently. Heck, stir frequently even if you do have non-stick cookware. Orzo likes to stick together.

When the orzo is soft and becomes wonderfully melty in your mouth, you know it’s done. Serve with feta, bread, spinach pie, or just enjoy it on its own.

And a hint: go easy on the salt! The olives are plenty salty on their own.

orzo tomatoes

 

Orzo with Greek tomato sauce

  • Servings: 4-5
  • Difficulty: moderate
  • Print

Ingredients

3 cloves of garlic, minced

2 tablespoons chopped black olives

2 tablespoons red wine

4-5 ripe tomatoes

1/2 cup tomato sauce (optional)

1 tbsp oregano

1 tsp parsley

1 cup orzo

3 cups water

1 tablespoon olive oil

salt and pepper to taste

 

For tomato sauce (skip if using only sauce from a can)

1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Make sure you have a bowl full of ice water handy

2. Add the tomatoes, and let them sit in the boiling water for about 30-45 seconds.

3. With a slotted spoon, scoop the tomatoes out of the boiling water and dunk them in the icy water.

4. The skins of the tomatoes should crack, and peel off easily. (Save ‘em if you make homemade vegetable stock.)

5.Chop off the hard stem, and squeeze out the tomato seeds and juice. Don’t worry about getting every last seed out.

6. Dice the tomatoes into quarters. Add them to a pan with heated olive oil, and simmer for about a half hour. The tomatoes will slowly start to break down.

Instructions, for sauce and orzo

1. Mince the garlic and add it to warm olive oil.

2. Saute for 30 seconds before adding the tomato sauce (fresh or canned).

3. Add all the other ingredients: olives, spices and wine.

4. Simmer for a minute or two, giving the wine time to cook off.

5. Add the orzo, and let simmer for another five minutes.

6. If you have the tomato sauce can handy, use it to add three cups of water to the orzo.

7. Let simmer on verrrrry low heat for 35-45 minutes.

8. If you’re not using a low stick pan, stir it frequently. Heck, stir frequently even if you do have non-stick cookware. Orzo likes to stick together.

When the orzo is soft and becomes wonderfully melty in your mouth, you know it’s done. Serve with feta, bread, spinach pie, or just enjoy it on its own.

And a hint: go easy on the salt! The olives are plenty salty on their own.

Advertisements

One response to “Orzo with Greek tomato sauce

  1. Pingback: Rice, corn and quinoa noodles: notes on gluten-free pasta | V 8 Mile·

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s