In Mediterranean cuisine, feta cheese is often paired with shrimp, the creamy, salty flavors marrying lusciously. Here, crumbled feta is added at the end of the cooking so it soaks up the warm juices from the sautéed shrimp. Instead of feta, you can try ricotta salata or a soft goat cheese. This dish makes a satisfying light meal for spring and summer.
Orzo with Feta, Basil and Shrimp
1 lb. medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
1/4 cup plus 2 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 tsp. sweet Spanish paprika
1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes
1/2 tsp. sea salt, plus more, to taste
3 cups orzo
1/2 cup packed fresh basil leaves, snipped into small pieces, plus 4 to 6 whole leaves
1/4 lb. feta cheese, crumbled
In a bowl, stir together the shrimp, the 1/4 cup olive oil, the paprika, red pepper flakes and the 1/2 tsp. salt. Cover and refrigerate for 1 to 2 hours.
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the orzo, stir well and cook until al dente (tender but firm to the bite), according to package instructions.
Meanwhile, in a large fry pan over medium-high heat, warm the 2 Tbs. olive oil. Drain the shrimp, discarding the marinade, and add the shrimp to the pan. Cook, turning once or twice, until the shrimp are opaque throughout, 1 to 2 minutes. Transfer the shrimp and any pan juices to a plate and cover to keep warm.
Drain the orzo and transfer to a warmed serving bowl. Add the shrimp and their juices and stir several times. Add the snipped basil and cheese and gently stir again once or twice. Garnish with the whole basil leaves and serve immediately. Serves 6 to 8.
I just made this and LOVE IT!! Easy, great tasting recipe!
Any recommendations on how to reheat? Cooking for one is no fun. 😄
Having this for dinner tonight!
Absolutely love this dish – easy and delicious. Has become a family standard.
Recipe calls for 3 cups orzo. I’m thinking that’s 3 cups of cooked orzo? If so, how many ounces uncooked?
When a recipe calls for an ingredient and then gives you directions as to how to cook it, you measure the dry ingredient. In this case, use 3 cups of uncooked orzo and follow the directions to cook it.
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used quinoa instead of orzo. quite delish and easy to make!
[…] Orzo with Feta, Basil and Shrimp. We all really liked it! We made two batches, one had imitation crab meat because True is allergic to shellfish and sans the spice, and then we made another with the shrimp and lots of spice! My only change to the recipe was that I added minced garlic in with the marinade and pretty well doubled the spice for ours. Ben liked all the flavors, but he didn’t like that the orzo wasn’t a whole grain. It’s my first time cooking orzo, so does anyone know if there’s a whole wheat version of it? We also both agreed while it was pretty spot on for flavors, it definitely could have used some vegetables in it. Next time, we’re thinking of throwing in either artichokes or roasted red bell peppers. I think that would add another yummy (and healthful) good dimension to the dish. Or even just cherry tomatoes like Frédérique suggested in last week’s family meal comments. […]
this looks really good