Very easy and delicious dish that could be served as a main course with a light green salad, or be part of a Sunday family buffet. The olives and basil add a more Mediterranean flavour. I used a combination of cheeses, feta and mozzarella, but if you would like to use just one, choose feta.
You will need
- 500gr orzo
- 4 Tbs olive oil
- 1 large onion, finely chopped
- 4 garlic cloves, crushed
- 1 red bell pepper, finely chopped
- ½ cup good quality white wine
- 800gr grated tomatoes (from a carton)
- 1/8 tsp chilli powder
- ½ tsp dried oregano
- 1–2 stalks fresh basil leaves
- salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 25 large prawns, peeled
- 100gr black olives, pitted and cut in half
- 200gr feta cheese, crumbled
- 200gr mozzarella cheese, coarsely grated
- chilli flakes (optional)
Preheat oven to 175 C (345 F). In a large pot bring plenty of salted water to boil. Add orzo and cook until «al-dente». Drain orzo but keep ½ cup of the cooking water.
Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan, over medium heat. Add the onion and cook stirring ocasionally for a couple of minutes. Throw in the garlic and cook for anothe two minutes, or so, until onion is soft. Add the red pepper and cook another 2-3 minutes. Increase heat to high and add the white wine. Let it bubble away for a minute. Add the tomatoes, chilli powder, oregano, basil leaves, salt and freshly ground black pepper. Lower the heat and let sauce simmer uncovered for 5 minutes, until it thickens slightly. Add the prawns to the sauce and cook for 1 minute.
Take saucepan off the heat and add the olives, feta, the orzo and the ½ cup of cooking water. Mix well and spread in a rectangular ceramic or glass baking pan. Sprinkle with the mozzarella and bake in the preheated oven for 20 minutes. Let baked orzo stand for 5-10 minutes. Serve with a green salad and sprinkled with chilli flakes.