One-pot orzo with beetroot, thyme and orange
This orzo cooks all in one pan to a satisfying deep purple with the spoonable feeling of a risotto. You can use any colour of beetroot you like here; I love the deep magenta of the red ones but yellow and pink work well too. I make this orzo with different vegetables as the seasons change.
- 20 - 30 mins
- a bunch of beetroot (around 650g), peeled and grated
- 300g orzo pasta
- a small bunch of thyme, leaves picked
- 3–4 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- 2 tablespoons good olive oil, plus more for finishing
- 1⁄2 vegetable stock cube or 2 teaspoons stock powder
- zest of a small unwaxed orange or clementine
- 4 handfuls of rocket
- 100g vegan feta-style cheese, crumbled (optional)
- a few handfuls of toasted chopped nuts (walnuts, almonds or hazelnuts will all work well)
- a drizzle of olive oil
To make the orzo pasta
Put the grated beetroot, pasta, thyme leaves, garlic and vinegar into a medium lidded pan with 1 teaspoon of sea salt, the 2 tablespoons of oil and 850ml water. Crumble in the stock cube or add the powder. Place the pan over a high heat, cover with a lid and bring to the boil, then simmer for 10 minutes until the pasta is cooked and all the water has been absorbed.
Stir it every minute or so to make sure that the pasta doesn’t catch on the bottom of the pan. If the orzo looks a little thick (you want it to be the consistency of risotto) add a little more hot water.
Spoon onto warm plates and finish with some orange zest, peppery leaves, a crumbling of feta (if using), some toasted nuts and a good drizzle of oil.
- In an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.