Wednesday, September 25, 2013

'Stuffed Hatch Chile' Orzo

I was going through our co-op share this past weekend and it hit me- another reason why I love the Fall... hatch chilies! But one can only stuff them and wrap them in bacon so many times without drawing rolled eyes at dinner, yes?

So what about making that beloved dish into a pasta side? Like maybe orzo?

Oh. Yeah. And I totally did. Here's what I had:

Orzo in the style of Stuffed Hatch Chilies
Recipe is per one uncooked cup of orzo, so determine serving size based on 
package prep recommendations. 

1 box/package orzo pasta
small hatch chilies (one chile per cup uncooked pasta)
 chicken broth (sub for water called for per package cooking directions)
olive oil & butter
roasted garlic cloves (2 per cup uncooked orzo, or sub 1/2 tsp garlic powder)
smoked paprika (1/4 tsp per cup uncooked orzo)
salt & pepper to taste
fresh lime juice (1/2 lime per cup uncooked orzo, or sub 1 TBS white vinegar or pickled jalapeno brine)
cream cheese (2 oz per cup uncooked orzo)
shredded sharp cheddar (1/4 cup per cup uncooked orzo)

And here's what I did:

Split hatch chiles and carefully cut out seeds and veins- wear gloves! Hatch chilies can be both mild and hot,
and you don't want to handle one of the hot ones with bare hands, trust me! 

Finely dice the cleaned chilies. Saute chilies in olive oil and butter, melting in 2-3 cloves of roasted garlic
or adding in powdered garlic after 3-5 mins.
Once chilies start to soften add in orzo and toast a little, almost like you would with
arborio rice when making risotto.  Then, also like making risotto, add in broth, paprika, and
salt/pepper to taste. Stir until creamy and pasta is cooked. Add lime juice, cream cheese,
and cheddar.
Serve right away, as the combo of cheeses and the method of stirring
orzo as it cooks will make this pasta become gummy-ish as it cools.

We had our orzo alongside sticky apple juice glazed chicken drumsticks, which were a great balance to this tangy, cheesy pasta side. Plus, having hatch chilies and apple-something in the same meal made it really feel autumn-ish, which is just what we wanted.


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