chicken, lemon and dill with orzo

I love hosting dinner parties.  It may have something to do with my firm conviction that the best conversation happens over shared a shared meal.  The thing is, many of my friends are booked for the weekends, so we end up having to make it work on random weeknights.  For me (or whoever else is hosting) that means finding no-fuss recipes that will feed several and allow us all to eat, drink, laugh and get home in time for a good night’s sleep.  The following baked chicken and orzo recipe was a huge hit this past Wednesday, and I was able to make Greek salad as an accompaniment while it was in the oven. YUM.


Chicken, Lemon, and Dill with Orzo (modified from an Everyday Food recipe)

INGREDIENTS

4 cups (32 ounces) chicken broth
3/4 cup water
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 1/4 teaspoons coarse salt
1/2 teaspoon ground pepper
1 pound chicken tenderloins, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 pound orzo
2 1/2 cups crumbled feta (5 ounces)
1/4 cup coarsely chopped fresh dill
1 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest, plus 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (juice and zest of one lemon)
1 cup grated parmesan cheese


DIRECTIONS

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a saucepan, bring broth, water, butter, salt, and pepper to a boil.

In a 3-quart (9”x13”) baking dish, combine chicken, orzo, feta, dill, lemon zest and juice. Pour hot broth mixture over orzo and stir once to incorporate.


Bake until orzo is tender and cooking liquid is creamy, 40 minutes.  Remove from oven, sprinkle parmesan on top and let stand 15 minutes before serving.  Yields 6 servings.

Note: the feta, lemon and dill give this dish a serious burst of Mediterranean flavor.  If you’d like to serve with Greek salad, I suggest The Pioneer Woman’s recipe.  I also put a Pear and Cranberry Crisp in the oven – they baked at the same temperature.  It was a supremely delicious night.  Serve with white or red wine.


Recommended for: a delicious and stress-free recipe (if you can chop ingredients and zest a lemon, you can do this!) to serve friends or family and a flavorful baked casserole that will make several meals in one.

Interested in other food-related posts? Check out Beth Fish Reads’ Weekend Cooking!

11 comments:

thekams said...

This sounds and looks so good! I have a whole bag or Orzo pasta that I had no idea what to do with. I think this might have to be next Sunday night's dinner =)

Beth F said...

This looks like an awesome update on the old standard that relied on cream of [whatever] soup. This looks much, much better.

Juju at Tales of Whimsy.com said...

YUM!
I'm SO making this.

Patty said...

recipes that just cook themselves are the best remedy for midweek dinners (I see we lead similar social lives!). I'm trying this on the next occasion!

Lu @ Regular Rumination said...

This looks delicious!

Sue Jackson said...

That looks and sounds wonderful. Unfortunately, I can no longer eat dairy - feta cheese is one of the things I miss most :)

Your easy weeknight dinner parties sound like a lot of fun! We had our annual Mardi Gras party last night.

Sue

Book By Book

Esme said...

This sounds delicious. ANything with lemon always is.

Ryan said...

Sounds so good. I'm thinking this will be made in my house sometime soon.

Gina @ My Precious said...

Wow, this one sounds great. I like to make casseroles and this one has all the ingredients my family loves. Thanks I wish I could pin this or save it somehow to reference later.

M said...

I am so making this! This looks yummy and healthy.

Gina @ My Precious said...

Ended up making this not too long ago and it was a big hit with the family. Thanks so much for an awesome recipe

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