Sunday, December 5, 2010

Creamy Orzo with Ham and Peas

Last week, as the weather took a turn and got really chilly and I moved the last piece of firewood from the back of the property to the rack on the back porch, I made a couple of calls for another load of wood.  It would be a couple of days before it could be delivered which was fine; I had plenty to last until then.  I came home from work a couple of days later on an evening that was cold and quite windy and as soon as we walked in, I went to building a fire.  I walked out back, and not only was the rack out on the back of the property line completely full, the rack on the back porch was now full again.  I was ecstatic as this meant, it would be another week and a half until I need to transfer any wood.  And did I already mention, it's now cold here and probably will be until April-ish?!?

Later that night when the guy who had delivered the wood, who also happens to be an old friend of mine, came to pick up the money, I offered him to stay for dinner. It was ready and all...  He was excited.  Apparently as a male bachelor, you don't have many home cooked meals. I tried to warn him not to get excited.  Not that this wouldn't be a good meal; I knew he was a meat and potato kind of guy.

Though this was no meat and potato kind of dish, both he and Serena had two helpings.  It was very good and super easy for a cold winter work night.

Creamy Orzo with Ham and Peas
slightly adapted from Katiedid (Babycenter)

1/2 lb orzo pasta
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium shallot, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 lb Hormel's Cure 81 sliced ham, diced
1/4 cup heavy cream
1/2 to 1 cup 2% milk
1 cup frozen peas, thawed
3/4 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
salt & ground black pepper

Bring a heavy large saucepan of salted water to a boil over high heat.  Add the orzo and cook until tender, about 8 minutes.  Drain.  Meanwhile, heat the oil in a heavy large frying pan over medium heat.  Add the shallot and garlic, and saute until tender, about 2 minutes.  Add the ham and cook until they are heated through, about 5 minutes.  Stir in the heavy cream, 1/2 cup of milk, and peas.  Add the orzo and toss to coat.  Remove the skillet from the heat.  Add the Parmesan to the pasta mixture and toss to coat.  Stir in remaining milk until pasta is to desired consistency.  Season the orzo with salt and pepper and serve.

1 comment:

  1. How cute! You adopted a bachelor for dinner that night. It sounds cold there. In Colorado we are having freak weather. It has only snowed once or twice so far this year (Denver), and not enough to warrant shoveling. But I am enjoying the 60 degree weather . . . This orzo dish looks good.