Our Lady of Weight Loss

Does this  Dysfunctional Chef  love a simple, easy, salty, nutty, cheesy recipe that one can eat in bulk?   In other words, a dish that gives you a lot of bang for your calorie buck? And one that you can serve to guests and impress?  You betcha’!  And the more I think about it, I’m thinking this might be one of my finest recipes ever!

Orzo, Tomatoes, Capers … Oh My!

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup orzo
2 cups organic vegetable broth (I like the broth that comes in the carton!)
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
2 teaspoons capers, drained and finely chopped
2 tablespoons pine nuts, finely chopped
1 bag of fresh Spinach (I prefer baby spinach, ’cause it’s so darn cute and little and fresh looking!)
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon grated lemon zest
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

In a frying pan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the tomatoes and garlic and cook until the tomatoes are tender, about 2 minutes, and then toss the bag of spinach into the mix.  It wilts fast.  So just keep turning it, mixing it all together, and when wilted – remove all and put on the side (in a bowl, of course).

Then, take a large saucepan – and combine the orzo and vegetable broth over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer until the pasta is al dente (tender).  That takes about 5 to 7 minutes, depending on how ‘al’ you like it.  Remove from the heat and let stand, covered, until almost all of the liquid is absorbed, which takes a few minutes, maybe 2, maybe 3.

Once the liquid is absorbed, toss the thyme, capers, pine nuts, cheese, lemon zest, salt and pepper into to mix. Add the spinach / tomato mix and toss.   Once it looks like everything is evenly distributed, spoon into  bowls and serve immediately.

A 5 YUM dish if ever there was one!
Serves 2!!!

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