Spinach Tomato Orzo Soup

Probably not what most people are posting for St. Patrick’s Day…but hey, you can’t get much greener than spinach!

Okay, so that doesn’t look so hot. But the end result….
That’s a little more appetizing I hope. I love soup, so it looks pretty darn good to me. Especially since it continues to be cold and rainy and just plain gross weather wise.
As with most things I make, this is pretty easy to throw together, and even better, it’s healthy! I’m not sure why, but I love orzo in soup.
Of course, with all this healthiness going on, I’m the only one in my house that would eat it. If you are not a big veggie eater, soup is a good way to get more in your diet. Spinach works great in soup because of its mild flavor, and you can puree your other veggies if you don’t like the chunks. I do that a lot, because honestly, the only chunks I want are chocolate ones 🙂

Spinach Tomato Orzo Soup

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 lb spinach
1 – 15 oz can diced tomatoes 

1 tsp dried basil
1 tsp dried oregano
1 cup orzo pasta
4 quarts chicken or vegetable stock

salt and pepper, too taste
Parmesan cheese (optional)
  • Place a large stock/soup pot on medium high heat. Add olive oil. 
  • Saute onions until tender. Reduce heat to medium and add garlic. Saute for about a minute 
  • Add canned tomatoes, spices, spinach, and chicken or vegetable stock. Increase heat to medium high and bring to a boil.
  • Reduce heat to medium and add orzo pasta, cooking for 12 – 15 minutes, or until orzo is tender. Taste and add salt and pepper as needed. 
Serve with a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese if desired. I love cheese in my soup!
                 (Recipe adapted from Babble)
 
You could easily add meat to this soup, like chicken or chicken/turkey sausage. You could also use kale instead of spinach if you are a kale fan, as well as incorporating more veggies. That’s the great thing about soup, it’s pretty versatile. Now, if only my children’s taste buds would become more versatile…the only soup they will eat is chicken noodle. And then, only 2 out of 3 will eat it! Oh well, enjoy your St. Patrick’s Day!
I leave you with a little Irish Blessing –
May joy and peace surround you, 
contentment latch your door, 
and happiness be with you now
and bless you evermore!

I may be linking up at any of the following – (Monday) The Tumbleweed Contessa, The Dedicated House, Skip to my Lou, Making the World Cuter, I Should Be Mopping the Floor, This Gal Cooks, Huckleberry Love (Tuesday) Sowdering About in Seattle, Naptime Creations, Mandy’s Recipe Box, Love in the Kitchen, Memories By the Mile,Inside BruCrew Life, VMG206, Anyonita Nibbles (Wednesday) The Newlyweds Pilgrimage, Fluster Buster, Mostly Homemade Mom, Adorned from Above, Lady Behind the Curtain, Ginger Snap Crafts, Naptime is My Time, Tessa the Domestic Diva (Thursday) Project Inspire,Joyful Homemaking, Designed Decor, Miz Helen’s Country Cottage, Lamberts Lately (Friday) Not Your Ordinary Recipes, Simple Living and Eating, Just Us Four, Bacon Time with the Hungry Hungry Hypo, Diana Rambles, The Better Baker,Craftionary, The Best Blog Recipes,Close to Home, 30 Handmade Days, A Peek Into My Paradise,The Jenny Evolution , Walking on Sunshine, Vintage Chic (Saturday) Six Sisters’ Stuff, Made from Pinterest

Orzo with Roasted Vegetables

My sister has been talking about how delicious Orzo with Roasted Vegetables is for a while now.  I love orzo, but when I heard ‘roasted vegetables’ – I sort of thought “ewww”.  However, if you’ve been reading my blog, you know that I have recently discovered that I actually like roasted vegetables.  So, I figured it was time to re-visit the recipe.  Especially since I still have…
I did not follow the recipe exactly, I just used what veggies I had on hand.  This is one of those recipes that you can change up quite a bit, depending on your likes (peppers) or dislikes (mushrooms).  I don’t think there’s any hope for mushrooms.  They just gross me out.

Orzo with Roasted Vegetables

adapted from For the Love of Cooking 

6-8 spears of asparagus, sliced in thirds
1/2 orange bell pepper, diced
1/2 yellow bell pepper, diced (I threw some banana peppers in there too)
1/2 red onion, diced

3 garlic cloves, leave skin on while roasting
15-20 grape tomatoes
4 tbsp olive oil (divided)
Juice of 1-2 lemons, to taste
Sea salt and freshly cracked pepper, to taste
1 cup orzo
2 green onions, sliced thin
1/4 cup reduced fat feta cheese
10 fresh basil leaves
 
Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
For quick clean up, use a foil lined baking sheet, then spray with cooking spray.
Toss the asparagus, bell peppers, onion and garlic with the olive oil, salt and pepper on the baking sheet.

Roast for 20 minutes, then toss & add the tomatoes. Roast for an additional 10 minutes.
While veggies are roasting, prepare the orzo per instructions on box.
Drain and transfer to a large serving bowl.
When vegetables are done, carefully squeeze the garlic from their skins and mix with orzo.
Add roasted vegetables to the orzo.
Combine: lemon juice, 2 tablespoons of olive oil, salt and pepper (to taste) and pour over orzo/vegetables.
Add the green onions, feta cheese and basil. Toss to coat evenly.

I made Whole Wheat Beer Bread to go with it.  I heart bread products.  and beer.  Since I have discovered the Michelob Ultra Peach flavor (and love it), I thought I’d give it a try in the bread.  I also added cinnamon, to make kind of a sweet bread.  It was very good.  As in, I ate 1/2 a loaf in one evening good.  There’s not much better than warm bread with a schmear of butta…mmmm…

So, I thought I was all that making this yummy, and very healthy meal. The hubs liked it, but the kids were less than impressed. They did like the bread however. They think I’m the craziest mother ever b/c I feed them things with beer in it. My mother-in-law would not approve. Anywho…the next night I had left overs and fixed these for the kids
They said I was the BEST cook EVER.  Kids are so easy.  Okay, not really, but this was a super easy recipe from Pillsbury.  I used Reduced Fat Grands biscuits and Cabot’s 50% reduced fat cheese, and ham (without added nitrates and nitrites, of course – geesh, all the crap moms have to remember).  I highly recommend using reduced fat ham and cheese or when you bite into them you will get grease/”juice” running out.  ewww

So these little gems get 5 stars in my kids’ book.  Guess I’ll be making them more often.  Grands makes a reduced fat wheat biscuit that I’ll use next time, but couldn’t find them at my regular grocery store. (what else is new?)

I’m linking up with Finding Joy in My Kitchen