There are a few things that are forbidden from ever gracing a plate in our house. For me, ketchup, mustard, mayo, bananas, and oranges are just a few things that are from the devil's house. For Brian, the list consists of peas, water chestnuts, and sweet potatoes. Which are three that I LOVE. This recipe has been on my "to-make" list for a long time, but it's always been on the back burner since it has peas in it.
If you keep up with my 365 blog, you may remember that I went through some cookbooks for a new project that my dear friend, Pamela, started for herself. I got inspired and decided to take five cookbooks, look through them, and bookmark recipes to make. Low and behold, this recipe was in a cookbook of mine. I decided to make it anyways and if Brian wasn't a fan of peas, he could push them to the side. :)
Baked Orzo with Fontina and Peas
Source: Giada as seen in Giada's Kitchen, page 111
4 cups chicken broth
1 pound orzo pasta
3 tablespoons butter, plus more to grease the baking dish
1 onion, chopped
8 ounces mushrooms, sliced (I used cremini mushrooms, but the cookbook calls for button mushrooms)
1 cup Marsala wine
1/2 cup heavy cream
4 ounces shredded fontina cheese (about 1 cup)
4 ounces diced fresh mozzarella cheese (about 1 cup)
1 cup frozen peas, thawed
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup bread crumbs
1/4 cup grated Parmesan
1 teaspoon dried thyme
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Butter a 9 by 13-inch baking dish.
Bring the chicken broth to a boil over medium-high heat in a medium saucepan. Add the orzo and cook until almost tender, about 7 minutes. Pour the orzo and the broth into a large bowl. Set aside.
Meanwhile, melt the butter over medium heat in a medium skillet. Add the onions and saute until tender, about 3 minutes. Add the mushrooms and continue to saute until the mushrooms are beginning to turn golden around the edges, about 7 minutes. Add the Marsala. Scrape the brown bits off the bottom of the pan and cook until the Marsala has reduced by half, about 5 minutes. Add the mushroom mixture to the orzo in the large bowl. Add the cream, fontina, mozzarella, peas, salt, and pepper. Stir to combine. Pour the mixture into the prepared baking dish.
In a small bowl combine the bread crumbs, Parmesan, and dried thyme. Sprinkle the bread crumb mixture on top of the pasta. Bake until golden, about 25 minutes.
Even with the peas, Brian ate two servings and loved it. It is very creamy and rich and yummy. Now if I could just get him to eat sweet potatoes... :)