Friday, May 1, 2009

Some ideas for your next one pot dinner.

Its that time of year again. Asparagus time! The farmers market down at Dupont Circle is full of bunches of green and purple tipped sprouts, fat and tasty, just waiting to be chopped into a salad or sauteed with olive oil and lemon. Here is a great one pot spring dish that is flexible enough to be adapted to your left-overs. Turkey, Orzo, Fresh Asparagus, Lemon Juice, Olive Oil, Parsley and Capers dress up this spring "stir fry" in my version but feel free to substitute barley, wheat berries, brown rice or some other grain for the orzo, omit the turkey entirely or use ham or chicken instead.

Orzo with Asparagus, Lemon and Turkey
About 2 cups turkey meat chopped into bite-sized pieces (or chicken or ham or omit entirely)
2 large bunches of asparagus, washed and cut into sections.
2 cups cooked orzo (or substitute brown rice, barley, wheat berries or other cooked grains)
1/2 cup feta cheese, or to taste (you may use low or non-fat feta if prefered)
Zest and Juice of one large lemon (organic of course)
1-2 tbsp capers or to taste
around 1/2 cup of white wine
about 1/2 cup minced flat leaf parsley
2 medium cloves garlic, minced or smashed.
1 large bunch green onions, chopped
2 tsp-1 tbsp olive oil
Salt and fresh ground black pepper
Red pepper flakes to taste


1. Heat the olive oil in a large saute pan to medium heat. Sautee the green onions and asparagus, add the garlic and half the parsley and cook for a minute.

2. Add the cubed turkey meat and brown for a minute or two.

3. Add the white wine, capers, lemon zest and half the juice. Stir in the cooked orzo or grain of your choice. Lower the heat to medium-low and cook for several minutes, stirring regularly.

4. Add salt and pepper, red pepper flakes and lemon juice to taste. Stir in remaining parsley.

5. Turn off the heat, stir in the feta cheese, adjust seasonings if needed, add more lemon juice if necessary. Serve with a side salad and a nice glass of wine.