Saffron Carrot Orzo Risotto Recipe


I usually cook risotto when I want to make good use of excess pantry staples in my kitchen. In this risotto, instead of using rice, I selected orzo pasta. I kept the dish vegetarian and flavored it with saffron, carrots and very little Pecorino cheese.

To ensure a good, creamy consistency, I moistened the orzo risotto with white wine, homemade vegetable stock and a dab of butter.

I find that the combination of butter and shallots makes for the most flavorful dishes, and this is no exception. The risotto was so exquisite, I served it as the main course. It’s filling and delicious; you won’t be disappointed.

1. Info for Saffron Carrot Orzo Risotto Recipe

  • Cook Time: unavailable
  • Total Time: unavailable
  • Servings: 8
  • Calories: unavailable

2. Ingredients for Saffron Carrot Orzo Risotto Recipe

  • 2 carrots
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 shallots
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 2 shallots, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup orzo
  • 2 tablespoons Pecorino cheese, freshly shaved
  • 1¾ cups homemade vegetable stock, warm
  • 1 tablespoon sea salt

3. Directions:

  1. For the carrots: Peel and cut the carrots on the bias into 2-inch slices using a vegetable carving knife (you don’t have to cut them this way; I just think it’s pretty). Cut the slices into strips.
  2. In a pot, heat 1 tablespoon oil. Add th2 cups water. Bring to a boil. Cover with a lid. Reduce to medium-heat and cook for about 20 minutes (until fork tender).
  3. Drain the extra liquid (if any). Transfer to a plate.
  4. For the risotto:
  5. In a mortar and pestle, grind the saffron threads. Add about ¼ cup of water.
  6. In the same pot, heat the rest of the oil and cook the shallots for 2-3 minutes. Lower the heat and cook for 5 minutes until golden. In the same saucepan, add the butter and orzo. Make sure the grains of orzo are well coated. Add 1 cup of warm vegetable stocks and the Pecorino cheese and stir frequently.
  7. After bringing the liquid to a boil, lower the heat to medium-low and cook for about 10 minutes. Add the saffron liquid. Check the liquid and periodically add ¼ cup of warm vegetable stock (up to an additional ½ cup water if needed) as soon as the liquid has been absorbed. Simmer for another 15 minutes.
  8. Assembly time:
  9. At this point the orzo is still al dente. Season with salt and pepper. Add the cooked carrots. Stir well. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat and cook for 10-15 minutes.
  10. Check doneness. Add a bit more water if needed and extend the cooking time by another 5 minutes (if necessary). Adjust seasoning and finish with a little butter.
  11. When ready to serve, sprinkle a bit of. Turn off the heat, cover and let stand for 5 minutes.
  12. Garnish with the reserved lemon zest. Decorate with the lemon slices.
  13. Bon appétit!

4. Tips and advices:

  • Coating the grains of orzo in butter prevents them from sticking to one another.

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