Tiny, rice-shaped orzo absorbs liquid and flavor much like rice, but unlike traditional risotto, this recipe doesn't need to be stirred obsessively for a perfectly al dente, creamy result.
Sunset NOVEMBER 2005
1. Melt 1 tablespoon butter in a 12-inch frying pan over high heat. Add 12 ounces sliced mushrooms and 3/4 cup chopped shallots or onion; cook, stirring often, until mushrooms are lightly browned, 9 to 12 minutes.
2. Reduce heat to medium and add 2 more tablespoons butter and 2 cups dried orzo pasta; stir often until pasta is light golden, about 2 minutes.
3. Add 3 cups chicken broth and 1/2 cup dry sherry. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce heat and simmer, stirring often, until pasta is tender to bite and most of the liquid is absorbed, 9 to 11 minutes. If mixture becomes too thick before pasta is done, add a little more broth.
4. Stir in 1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese and salt and pepper to taste. Spoon risotto into wide bowls and sprinkle with a little chopped parsley and more parmesan cheese to taste.
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