Friday, April 13, 2012
Chicken with Orzo, Asparagus, and Parmesan
Adapted from Cook's Illustrated - Serves 2
(Israeli Couscous can be substituted for the orzo, if desired)
1/4 cup flour
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts-about 5 to 6 ounces each
2-3 tablespoons olive oil
salt and black pepper
3/4 cup orzo
3 tablespoons finely diced red onion -Cook's used a diced shallot
3 medium garlic cloves, minced or pressed
1 teaspoon minced fresh thyme leaves, or 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 1/2 cup low sodium chicken broth
8 ounces asparagus, tough ends trimmed, and cut into 1 inch lengths
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
2. Place flour in a dish. Pat the chicken breast dry with a paper towel. Season well with salt and black pepper. Dredge the chicken in flour and shake off excess.
3. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a non stick 10 inch skillet, over medium heat. Add the chicken and cook until browned on both sides, about 5 minutes. Transfer the chicken to a baking pan and place in the oven to finish cooking, about 5-10 minutes.
4. As chicken bakes, add 1 more tablespoon of oil to the skillet along with the orzo. Toast the orzo until golden about 2 minutes. Add the onion, garlic, thyme, and lemon zest to the skillet and stir about 30seconds until fragrant.
5. Pour the chicken broth in pan and scape up any brown bits. Stir over low heat for about 4 minutes. Add the asparagus, stir and cover the skillet with a lid. Cook until asparagus is crisp tender and orzo is al dente, 4-6 minutes longer. Season with salt and pepper.
6. Remove pan from heat. Stir the lemon juice and the Parmesan cheese into the orzo. Divide between 2 plates and top with the chicken. Garnish with fresh thyme and lemon zest if desired. Enjoy!