February 5th, 2013

Orzo with Browned Butter and Parmesan


“This little black dress of a side dish pairs with practically anything—grilled meat, roasted chicken, sautéed vegetables. Like rice pilaf, the orzo is browned in butter before broth is added, which gives it a rich, nutty flavor.” ~Fine Cooking

Do you ever find yourself in a rice and potato rut- serving the same side dish meal after meal?   This orzo is a fun change of pace.  It’s easy enough to serve any night of the week, but rich enough for your finest dinner party.   Serve  it in place of rice with chicken and fish, and replace potatoes with  this pasta  for a unique and delicious dining experience.


Orzo with Browned Butter and Parmesan


1-1/2 cups chicken broth
1 tablespoon butter
1 cup orzo
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
Thinly sliced fresh chives (optional)


In a 1- to 2-quart saucepan, bring the chicken broth, white wine vinegar and 1/4 cup water to a simmer over medium-high heat.

In a 3-quart heavy-duty saucepan, cook the butter over medium heat, swirling the pan occasionally, until the butter turns golden brown and smells nutty, about 2 minutes. Add the orzo and stir with a wooden spoon to coat well. Cook until the orzo just begins to turn a light golden color, about 2 minutes.

Add the simmering broth mixture, stir, cover, and reduce the heat to low. Cook until the orzo is just tender, about 12 minutes; remove the lid and continue to cook another 5 minutes to allow liquids to reduce (the mixture may still be a little wet but will set up).

Stir the orzo, season to taste with salt and a generous amount of pepper, and mix in the Parmigiano. Cover and let rest 5 minutes. Add the chives (if using) and serve.

recipe adapted from Fine Cooking

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3 Responses to “Orzo with Browned Butter and Parmesan”

  1. Wow, you are a mind reader. I have chicken in the oven and just bought a box of orzo. Guess what we’re having for dinner now? Thanks!

  2. I made this over the weekend and my family really loved it. It’s nice to have a change from potatoes…

  3. I made this as a side dish for our Valentine dinner. It was wonderful! I’ve never used orzo before–now I want to find more recipes! Thanks!


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