Monday, August 27, 2012

Grilled Vegetables with Creamy Orzo

I relied on on a favorite tried-and-true recipe for tonight's Meatless Monday dinner.  I make it at least a couple of times per year and it never disappoints.  An assortment of grilled vegetables get dressed with a simple vinaigrette once they are cooked to perfection and served over a bed of creamy, cheesy orzo.  It is one of my favorite vegetarian meals based on the simplicity of the ingredients that all work together.

Grilled Vegetables with Creamy Orzo
Makes 4 servings

3/4 pound dry orzo pasta
3/4 cup heavy cream
1/3 cup Parmesan, grated
3 tablespoons butter, unsalted
Salt and black pepper, to taste

3 tablespoons white wine vinegar
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 teaspoon each sugar, salt, and black pepper

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 sweet onion, sliced in thick rounds
1 pound Roma tomatoes, halved and seeded
1 pound eggplant, sliced lengthwise into 1" thick planks
1 pound fresh asparagus, trimmed
2 small zucchini, halved lengthwise
Salt to taste

Preheat the grill to medium-high.

Make the Vinaigrette:  Combine the vinegar, 2 tablespoons oil, sugar, salt and pepper in a bowl; set aside.

Cook the orzo in a large pot of salted water according to package directions; drain.  Return pasta to the pot and stir in cream, Parmesan, butter, salt and pepper.

While the orzo is cooking, coat the onion slices, tomato halves, eggplant planks, asparagus spears, and zucchini halves with 2 tablespoons oil.

Grill onions, eggplant and zucchini, covered for 5 minutes, then add asparagus. Grill asparagus, covered 2 minutes.  Add tomatoes and grill all vegetables for 3 minutes more.

Remove from the grill and chop vegetables; transfer to a large bowl.  Toss vegetables with the vinaigrette while warm and season with salt.  Serve vegetables over Creamy Orzo.

Adapted from Cuisine at Home Grilling

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