Herb-Rubbed Chicken with Creamy Orzo
12" dutch oven
8 oz. orzo pasta, uncooked
2 chicken breasts, butterflied into halves (or 4 small breasts)
Salt and pepper
2 tsp. herb de Provence
2 Tbs. olive oil
1 shallot, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 (14 oz.) can diced tomatoes with juice
2 cups broccoli florets
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Add the orzo and cook until al dente, about 10 minutes. Drain pasta, reserving 1/2 cup of pasta water.
Season both sides of chicken with salt and pepper. Sprinkle evenly with Herb de Provence. Heat the olive oil in a 12" dutch oven using about 20 coals. Add the chicken breasts to the pan and cook until golden brown. Reduce the heat (I took about 4 coals off) and add the shallot; saute 2-3 minutes. Add the garlic and saute 1 minute more, or until fragrant. Add the diced tomatoes with juice and broccoli florets, scraping the bottom of the pan to remove any browned bits. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to simmer over medium low. Cover and let cook until the broccoli is crisp tender, about 10-15 minutes. Stir in the cooked orzo, heavy cream and Parmesan cheese. Mix until well blended, and Parmesan cheese has melted. If necessary, add some of the reserved pasta water to smooth out the sauce. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve immediately.
The Finished Product
I was really disappointed by this dish. All the comments about it on the site it came from were about how wonderful it was. I thought it was pretty bland. Even my kids said it didn't have much flavor, and it has to be really obvious for them to notice. I won't make this recipe again as it's written, but it has potential to be delicious. I'm going to experiment with it a bit and see if I can't add some flavor and make it better. What do all of you think? What would you add? I really want to like this one! If I get it worked out, I'll re-post the new version. Grade C-.