Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Confetti Orzo

Need a simple colorful side dish that goes well with almost anything? Try this orzo.

It's also very good as a chilled pasta salad, but I'd suggest using olive oil instead of butter if you intend on serving it cold.

If you can't find tri-color orzo, regular orzo is fine. The one I used had white(ish), light salmony-orange, and pastel army-green pasta. I've seen some at the farmer's market with more brilliantly-colored pasta that would be even more interesting.

Confetti Orzo

1 cup tri-color orzo
2 ears fresh corn
1/2 medium onion
1 red bell pepper*
1 tablespoon butter
1/2 teaspoon salt
Several grinds black pepper
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon thinly sliced fresh chives

Cook the orzo in boiling salted water until al dente, then drain. You can do this ahead of time and rinse with cold water to keep it from sticking.

While the pasta is cooking, prepare the vegetables. Cut the corn from the cobs and discard the cobs. Dice the onion into pieces about the same size as the corn. Core the bell pepper and dice into pieces about the same size as the corn.

Melt the butter in a pan on medium heat and add the onion. Cook, stirring as needed, until it begins to soften and become translucent. Add the salt, pepper, bell pepper, and corn. Cook, stirring as needed, until the bell pepper barely begins to soften.

Add the cooked pasta, and stir to combine. Add the lemon juice and chives, give it another stir, and take it off the heat. Serve hot.

*I used parts of several peppers - red, orange, and yellow - for more color. You can use one pepper, if you prefer.