Everyone agrees this is a lovely dish and it is so straightforward to make. My friend Agnes recommended orzo (thank you Agnes!) – it is pasta but looks like rice, and has a very satisfying consistency. It is traditionally used in soups but also works in pasta bakes and as a quicker alternative to rice in risotto.
Because orzo is so small it is handy to use when cooking for babies and young children, and in this dish the grated courgette is a simple way of sneaking in veg! You can use other types of pasta if you can’t find orzo. It serves 4-6 people and at less than £1 per head it is a budget meal too. Yum!
300g orzo pasta
300ml crème fraiche/double cream
1 large courgette, grated
A good sprinkle of dried mixed herbs
Finely grated zest of 1/2 lemon
50g cheddar, grated
2 veg stock cubes, crumbled
Salt and pepper
Preheat the oven to 200 degrees/gas mark 6.
Cook the orzo according to the pack instructions, drain and transfer to a casserole dish. Pour in the crème fraiche/cream and add the grated courgette and lemon zest. Mix well. Crumble in the stock cubes and add some extra water if it needs it – you want the dish to be moist but not watery. Add a little salt and some pepper and mix again. Sprinkle the cheese on top.
Bake in the oven for approx. 30 mins, until just browned (I finished mine off under the grill for extra colour but you may not need to). Serve with salad or veggie sausages.