We’ve reached that time of year when you can’t give away summer squash and zucchini. They are everywhere, and everyone is over it. I mean no one in this family truly loves these veggies so we were over it pretty quickly around here. I was happy to come across a number of recipes from Animal, Vegetable, Miracle, which I’ve been reading for what seems like forever(#momlife). This one for disappearing squash orzo has been dubbed the favorite so far.
Over the year’s I’ve discovered a couple of ways to make these vegetables more tolerable to my family. It gets shredded into bread, marinated for days and grilled, hidden in soups (like this and this) and covered in sauces Tomato sauce, and curry are house favorites). While I’ve managed to make it work, I’m always looking for more recipes. Mostly because its a vegetable that is so abundant it seems silly to not take advantage of it.
When I came across recipes for zucchini cookies and disappearing squash orzo I knew I struck gold. Of course, my version of this recipe is a little different from the original, but it’s mostly still the same. You know I added enough garlic for a small army, and Chuck loves his Parmesan cheese. I also added a little cooking liquid to the pan to help everything blend together well.
I’m starting to feel like its the little things, or steps in cooking that make all the difference in a recipe. Adding the little bit of cooking liquid with the expelled starches from the orzo helps the squash mixture to stick to the orzo better. It also helps blend the flavors together and make it just a little bit creamy. The result is a delightful creamy, and flavorful side dish.
While I’m sure this recipe is, in fact, meant to be a side dish I did eat it as a lunch the day after topped with a runny poached egg and some sauted green beans. It was hearty and warming a perfect summer lunch. The runny yolk made the pasta a little custard-y and rich and also super satisfying. I would definitely suggest this for a vegetarian summer meal some time also.
Disappearing Squash Orzo
- 1 cup orzo
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 small onion peeled and chopped
- 3-4 cloves of garlic
- ½ teaspoon oregano
- ¼ teaspoon thyme
- 2 large zucchini shredded
- ¼ cup grated parmesan
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Cook orzo according to package instructions, reserving ½ cup of cooking liquid.
- Heat oil in a large pan over medium high heat. Add onion and garlic and sauté until fragrant and softened, about 2 minutes.
- Site in the oregano and thyme and sauté for another minute.
- Add the shredded zucchini and sauté, stirring well for another minute.
- Stir in reserved cooking liquid and remove from heat.
- Toss in parmesan and cooked orzo until well combined.
- Add salt and pepper to taste and serve.