Saturday, February 13, 2010

Cheesy Orzo

My mom started making cheesy orzo as a side dish a few years ago. It's simple and easy and soooooo delicious. And I decided if you throw in a vegetable, it can upgrade from side dish to main course.

Cheesy Orzo:
  • 1 cup orzo
  • 1 14 oz can vegetable broth
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup frozen peas
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • Dash of garlic powder
Bring the vegetable broth to a boil in a small pot. Add the orzo and the peas. Turn the temperature to a low setting. Let cook for about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Sprinkle with garlic powder and stir in cheese until melted. Put into a bowl and eat up!

A few tips about this recipe:

  • I cook this orzo (which is pasta) like you would cook rice, with a 2 to 1 ratio, 2 parts liquid to 1 part orzo.
  • Though I think the cheese is the best part, vegans could easily leave out the cheese. And I am sure vegan cheese would be great, as long as it's a cheese that melts well.
  • Feel free to substitute parmesan or whatever your favorite cheese is for the mozzarella.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Tennessee Hummus

This past summer my family and I vacationed in this small town outside of Gatlinburg, Tennessee. As a vegetarian, I figured my vacation in Tennessee would be spent eating a lot of salad. But I was given a very pleasant surprise. In the town down the road from the cabin we stayed at there was a small restaurant with several vegetarian options. My family and I ordered some hummus and sat outside by the river. It was the best hummus I've ever had, slightly spicy with whole black beans. So I developed this recipe in order to recreate the best hummus ever.

Tennessee Hummus:

  • 1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2-3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon tahini
  • 1/2 an onion
  • 3-4 cloves of garlic
  • Dash of hot sauce
  • 1 tablespoon of lemon juice
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Paprika (optional)
In a food processor combine all ingredients except the black beans until smooth. Taste to adjust the seasoning. Put into serving dish and fold in the black beans. Dust with paprika for color. Serve with pita, chips, or fresh vegetables.