Recipe Review: Shrimp and Orzo with Cherry Tomatoes and Romano Cheese

by spiceaholic on April 21, 2008

Disclaimer: I was experimenting with our old digital camera today, please forgive me for the ugly picture.

I love the combo of pasta, shrimp, and garlic, if previous posts haven’t been obvious enough. I’ve had this recipe from Cooking Light saved in my recipe file for what seems like forever and finally decided it was time to try it out. It seemed yummy enough, calling for orzo, shrimp, and garlic among other ingredients. I’d never made orzo before but happened to have some in my pantry (funny how that worked out!), evidence of past shopping expeditions.

As usual, I tweaked it to fit what I had in the fridge and to my tastes. I subbed Campari tomatoes for cherry tomatoes (they were getting wrinkly), shaved Parmesan for the Romano, and added baby spinach to the mix.

Shrimp and Orzo with Cherry Tomatoes and Romano Cheese

Adapted from Cooking Light


1 cup uncooked orzo
1 lb. medium shrimp, peeled and deveined (I used frozen)
2 tbsp. olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
1 cup chopped onion
1 tbsp. minced garlic
crushed red pepper to taste
2 cups halved cherry tomatoes
1 cup baby spinach
1/3 cup shaved Romano or Parmesan
1/3 cup chopped fresh basil

Cook the pasta in boiling water, then drain and let sit.

While the pasta is cooking, heat up 1 tbsp. of the olive oil and saute shrimp, adding salt and black pepper. Remove from pan when pink. Add remaining oil, then add onions, cooking until they start to turn golden. Add garlic and crushed red pepper, cook for a minute. Add the tomatoes and spinach and cook until spinach begins to wilt. Now add the pasta and shrimp back in, mixing to combine thoroughly. Add more salt and pepper to taste, then add cheese and basil.

Serves 4.

Verdict: Ehhhhh. I think I need to make it again to give it a fair shot. I’m not a big fan of cooked fresh tomato, so might need to tweak that. Less onion or even omitting the onion might be something else to consider. Using fresh shrimp instead of frozen would be an improvement. Oh and not forgetting the basil would be good too — I thought it was missing a little something.

The original recipe says that leftovers taste good as a cold pasta salad. Hope so, because that’s getting packed into my bento for tomorrow’s lunch!


The leftovers tasted MUCH better cold at lunch, so maybe this would be better off as a pasta salad rather than a warm entree.

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