Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Sun-Dried Tomato, Black Olive & Mozzarella Orzo Gratin

1/2 pound orzo
1 cup minced onion
1/2 cup diced fennel
2 T unsalted butter
1 16-ounce can plum tomatoes, drained and chopped
1 cup light cream combined with 1 T flour
1 T minced fresh rosemary or 1 teaspoon dried, crumbled
2/3 cup sliced sun-dried tomatoes
1/3 cup sliced pitted oil-cured olives
1/2 pound fresh mozzarella, diced
2 T minced fresh basil
1/3 cup freshly grated parmesan

Preparing the orzo:
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. In a pot of boiling salted water cook the orzo until al dente and drain. Transfer to a large bowl. In a large skillet cook the onion and fennel in the butter over moderately low heat, covered, for 5 minutes. Add the tomatoes, cream mixture, rosemary and salt and pepper and simmer the mixture for 5 minutes. Add the vegetables to the bowl containing the orzo and stir in the sun-dried tomatoes, olives, all but 1/4 cup of the mozzarella cheese, basil and salt and pepper to taste. Transfer the mixture to a buttered 1-quart baking dish and sprinkle with the remaining mozzarella and parmesan. Bake for 30 minutes, or until golden brown.

Serves 4 to 6


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