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Jun 12, 2007 08:58 AM

Need your opinion on my homemade recipe

Here's what I'd like to try tonight. If you sat down at my table and I served you the following meal would you eat it? (assuming it's prepared well):

Mix cooked orzo, sauteed rainbow chard, feta cheese, lemon zest, and fried sage and place in a casserole pan; Top with pieces of seasoned rotisserie chicken; add additional feta cheese on top and bake in the oven until the cheese is bubbly.

Does that sound appetizing? Do you think the fried sage is necessary? What else would you add or take away from the dish to make it better? Thanks for your help and I want to incorporate your opinions in tonight's meal. I'll report back tomorrow!


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  1. Sage is good with chicken, but I wouldn't include it with chard, to my taste it would clash. The lemon zest is a very good idea. What would I add? Sauteed onions and maybe some red bell peppers or slivered green onions. I might add some broth, or some juices from the cooked chicken.

    NB, remember to not just cook til bubbly, but til heated through.

    To answer your question, yes I would certainly eat it as-is. However the above are ways that I would tweak it if asked.

    1. When and where? It sounds delicious! I don't think the sage is crucial, but it would add another dimension. Enjoy!

      1. i'd skip the sage with the chard and i don't like hot feta. i prefer the integrity of it cold or room temp. i'd reheat the chicken and serve it with the orzo. maybe add some toasted pint nuts or slivered almonds to the orzo for crunch.

        1. I agree with the sage critics...seems a little wintery compared to the rainbow chard. I would saute some garlic with the chard. or perhaps you had already planned to do so...:)

          1 Reply
          1. re: Sophia.

            Yours reminds me (sans chard) of a recipe I invented some years back. It is an orzo chicken salad using garlic roasted chicken - roast a whole chicken in garlic with about 40 cloves of garlic. and crown with wreaths of fresh herbs like thyme, rosemary, and oregano. I squeeze the whole cloves of roasted garlic into the orzo, shred the chicken, add strips of homemade roasted red peppers. I have used feta, but don't like the idea of melting it particularly. Actually, here is my recipe - I found it on file! Enjoy!!!

            Orzo Salad with Roasted Chicken, Peppers, Olives, and Herbs

            This dish is in principle simple but takes time to prepare. You have the option of serving the chicken separately alongside the orzo salad, but experimentation leads me to conclude that the ultimate dish is the salad itself. Fresh herbs make this salad lovely in springtime!

            12 ounces orzo pasta
            1 red pepper, roasted (see instructions on page XX) and marinated in olive oil, rosemary, and garlic
            4 ounces feta cheese
            handful of pitted good quality olives, green or black
            2 tablespoons fresh oregano leaves
            the juice of one-half a fresh lemon
            fresh ground pepper, medium grind

            2 whole chicken breasts, boneless or with bones
            1 wine glass of olive oil (about 1/2 to 2/3 cup)
            30-40 cloves of garlic, with a layer papery skins intact
            fresh sprigs of rosemary, thyme, chervil, etc. and some dried herbs such as marjoram, oregano, bay leaf
            salt and pepper

            In advance, oven roast the red pepper at 475°F, turning periodically to blacken in spots. Let steam in a sealed paper bag and skin and marinate in accordance with instructions on page xx.

            Wash, trim, and pat dry the chicken, cutting into four individual breasts. In a small-to-medium size casserole with tightly fitting lid (my Le Creuset works well here) pour half the olive oil. Set down the garlic cloves, making a little bed for the chicken. Set the chicken down, not overlapping. Sprinke with salt and pepper to taste. Then place herbs on top and tuck in and around the chicken. Pour over the remaining olive oil. Make sure the lid fits well so that chicken will steam with the garlic and herbs. If not, seal the lid with a paste of flour and water.

            Roast chicken in 350°F oven for 1 hour.

            Meanwhile, boil the orzo in salted water, adding a tablespoon of olive oil to keep it from sticking together. Boil for five minutes and turn off heat. Let orzo sit in boiling water for another five minutes or so. Check for doneness and carefully drain through a large sieve. Put orzo in bowl.

            Chop the marinated red pepper and add to the orzo together with some of the olive oil used for marinating. Add the olives, chopped into quarters or halves. Add the lemon juice and the oregano, roughy minced. Add ground black pepper to taste. Let the flavors meld together at room temperature but in a place where it can cool somewhat.

            After chicken has cooled, remove from casserole. Squeeze some of the roasted garlic out of its skin and add to the orzo. Thinly slice the chicken breasts. Add to the orzo along with a small amount of the olive oil used for cooking, if desired. How much olive oil you add really is a matter of taste!

            Alternately, you may serve the chicken breasts whole, together with garlic and bread, with the orzo on the side. I have served two breast halves one evening and then added the breasts (with a little cooking oil) to the orzo in the evening, to slice and add to the salad the next day. The chicken is extremely tender due to the roasting/steaming process.

            This dish should be a hit at any potluck!