Save your weeknight with this 30-minute One-Pot Boursin Orzo with Chicken, Sun Dried Tomatoes and Spinach
Food columnist Sarah Nasello writes, "Filled, with protein, veggies, starch, dairy and flavor, this delicious One-Pot Boursin Orzo with Chicken, Sun-Dried Tomatoes and Spinach has all the components needed for the perfect, quick and easy weeknight dinner."
FARGO — This time of year, I am always in search of meals that can be produced quickly with little effort and clean-up required. This Boursin Orzo with Chicken, Sun-Dried Tomatoes and Spinach requires just one pot and about 30 minutes to create the perfect dinner for these busy weeknights, and it doesn’t hurt that it is also irresistibly delicious.
The key to a true 30-minute recipe is to have everything you need chopped, measured and ready in place before you start cooking, which takes only about 5 minutes for this dish. The recipe calls for olive oil, butter, onion, fresh garlic, red pepper flakes, orzo pasta, chicken broth, Boursin cheese, cooked chicken, baby spinach and sun-dried tomatoes. The only chopping required is for the onion, garlic and tomatoes, and I save an extra step by using a rotisserie chicken from the grocery store.
To start, I sauté the onion with olive oil and butter until it just begins to turn translucent, about three to four minutes. Next, I add the uncooked orzo, garlic and red pepper flakes to the onions and cook them together for three minutes, so that the aromatics can infuse the pasta with toasty flavor. Orzo is the pasta noodle that looks like grains of rice, and its liquid-absorbing properties make it perfect for one-pot recipes like this one.
The next step is to add the liquid, and I use a combination of chicken broth and water to cook the orzo at a gentle simmer over medium-low heat, until it is al dente, which takes about 10 minutes. Once most of the liquid has been absorbed by the orzo noodles, I add the key ingredient – Boursin cheese – and stir it into the cooked pasta until it is smooth and fully incorporated.
Boursin cheese is a soft and crumbly cheese with a creamy, tangy texture that originated in Normandy, France, and is now available worldwide in a variety of flavors. For this recipe, I use the traditional garlic and fine herbs flavor, which you can find in the specialty cheese section of most grocery stores. I let the cheese sit at room temperature for at least 30 minutes before I do any cooking, so that it will melt easily into the dish once added.
Once the Boursin is melted, I remove the pot from the heat and add two and a half cups of shredded rotisserie chicken, two cups of baby spinach leaves and a quarter-cup of chopped sun-dried tomatoes. Then, I cover the pot and let the warmth from the pasta heat the ingredients for five minutes until they are hot, and the spinach has wilted.
Filled, with protein, veggies, starch, dairy and flavor, this delicious One-Pot Boursin Orzo with Chicken, Sun-Dried Tomatoes and Spinach has all the components needed for the perfect, quick and easy weeknight dinner.
One-Pot Boursin Orzo with Chicken, Sun Dried Tomatoes and Spinach
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons butter
1 cup yellow onion, finely chopped
1 tablespoon fresh garlic, minced (about 2 large cloves)
¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 ¼ cups uncooked orzo pasta
1 14.5-ounce can chicken broth
1 cup water
5.2 ounces Boursin cheese, room temperature
2 ½ cups cooked chicken, shredded (about 2 breasts)
2 cups (packed) fresh baby spinach
½ cup sun-dried tomatoes, roughly chopped
½ teaspoon kosher salt
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
In a large pot over medium heat, add the oil and butter. Once the butter is melted, add the onion and sauté over medium heat for 4 minutes until the onion softens and starts to become translucent.
Add the garlic, crushed red pepper flakes and orzo and cook for 3 minutes over medium-low heat, stirring often.
Add the chicken broth and water and bring to a boil over medium heat. Once bubbles appear, reduce the heat to medium-low. Cook at a gentle simmer (not a full boil) for 10 minutes, stirring often. The pasta will slowly absorb the liquid as it cooks, so if it appears to be evaporating before the 10 minutes are up, add more water, one tablespoon at a time.
Add the Boursin cheese and stir until fully melted and the mixture is smooth. Remove the pot from the burner and add the chicken, spinach, sun-dried tomatoes, salt and pepper. Stir until well combined, then cover the pot and let sit for 5 minutes, until the chicken and tomatoes are heated through, and the spinach is fully wilted. Taste and add more seasoning as desired. Serve immediately.
To store: This dish is best served fresh from the pot, and leftovers may be refrigerated for up to 3 days and reheated before serving.
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Recipes can be found with the article at InForum.com.