Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Greek Shrimp and Orzo with Feta

An easy skillet meal that's ready in just 30 minutes! Toasted orzo, shrimp, tomatoes, and loads of feta create a delicious one pot meal!

Between Christmas gifts, and Amazon lightning deals (anyone else get completely sucked into those?!), I acquired a healthy stack of cookbooks recently! I used to not pull on cookbooks much; I subscribed to tons of magazines and blogs so I just pulled recipes and inspiration from those. However, I realized I've been missing out on so many tested and dependable recipes out there!

Probably the most reliable recipe source out there is America's Test Kitchen. I love watching their show but love trying their recipes even more! Thanks to an Amazon lightning deal, I picked up a copy of one of their newest cookbooks. I've tried to restrain myself from just cooking it cover to cover - it's that good!

This is one of many recipes I've made and enjoyed from it. ATK is fantastic at looking at every angle of a recipe to make sure no unnecessary steps are involved or pricey ingredients. And they always ALWAYS work. My budget and time sensitive self appreciates that.

This was a huge hit at our house - we fought over the leftovers, and my husband thinks he doesn't even like feta! It's got a short ingredient list, and short cook time, but you'd never know it by the taste.

Put your cast iron skillet to use! It's oven safe and therefore PERFECT for this dish!

Greek Shrimp and Orzo with Feta
1 pound medium-large shrimp (31-40 per pound), peeled and deveined, shells reserved
3.5 cups water
12 ounces (2 cups) orzo
1 (14.5 ounce) can diced tomatoes with garlic and onion, drained with juice reserved
1 pinch saffron threads, crumbled
2 cups (8 ounces) crumbled marinated feta
3 scallions, sliced thin
salt and pepper

Adjust an oven rack to the middle position and preheat oven to 400. Pat the shrimp dry and season with salt and pepper. Transfer to a bowl, cover, and refrigerate.

Combine the shrimp shells, water, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper in a bowl. Cover and microwave until the liquid is hot and the shells are pink, about 6 minutes. Strain, discarding the shells and reserving the broth.

In a 12 inch cast iron skillet, toast the orzo over medium heat until lightly browned, about 4 minutes. Stir in the reserved shrimp broth, reserved tomato juice, and saffron. Bring to a simmer and cook, stirring often, until the orzo is al dente, 10-12 minutes.

Remove the skillet from the heat and stir in the shrimp and tomatoes. Sprinkle feta over top. Transfer the skillet to the oven and bake until the shrimp is cooked through and cheese is lightly browned, about 20 minutes.

Remove from oven and sprinkle with scallions before serving.

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