Thursday, February 12, 2015

Orzo Carbonara

Who's watching their fat intake anyway? Go ahead. Live a little.

Orzo  Carbonara

6 ounces bacon, cut into ½-inch pieces
2 tablespoons butter
1 pound orzo (rice-shaped pasta)
5 cups canned low-salt chicken broth, divided
½ cup whipping cream or table cream
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
Salt and pepper to taste

1.  Cook bacon in large heavy saucepan over medium heat until crisp, about 8 minutes.
2.  Using slotted spoon, transfer bacon to paper towel and drain.
3.  Pour off all but 1 tablespoon of bacon drippings from pan.
4.  Add butter and cook until butter begins to brown, about 2 minutes.
5.  Add orzo and 4 ½ cups chicken broth to pan.
6.  Simmer uncovered until orzo is just tender but still firm to bite and broth is absorbed, stirring often, about 8 minutes.
7.  Mix in Parmesan cheese and fresh thyme. Then stir in bacon.
8.  Season with salt and pepper.
9.  Thin with additional chicken broth if desired.

NOTE: May add one diced shallot or 3 tablespoons diced onion. Chopped mushrooms or chopped fresh asparagus may be added for color, flavor, and interest. <Would these be sautéed in extra bacon grease in separate pan and added at end with cheese?>

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