The Cooking Process:
Cooking the orzo – In a medium pot I brought salted water to the boil and then added the orzo. I cooked this until just tender, which took about 8 minutes and then drained it. As per recipe instructions, I reserved ⅓ cup of the cooking water.
Preparing the tomato sauce ingredients and shrimp – While the orzo cooked, I prepared the shrimp and tomato sauce. This was done by finely chopping the shallots and garlic. I also rinsed the shrimp and then drained them on a paper-towel-lined plate. They were then patted dry and seasoned with salt and pepper.
Cooking the tomato sauce and shrimp – Sun Basket offers the option to upgrade to jumbo shrimp, but I decided to stay with the regular ones as.they looked delicious! In a large frying pan over a medium heat, I warmed some oil until hot but not smoking. I then added the shallots, garlic, paprika, and almost all the Urfa chili flakes that Sun Basket sent. I have to say I have never used Urfa before, so I had no idea what to expect but it smelt great! I continued heating this mixture until the shallots were translucent. I then added the tomatoes and cooked, stirring often, until the sauce had thickened. This took about 5 minutes. After I felt the sauce was ready, I added the shrimp and reserved pasta cooking water and cooked, turning once, until the shrimp were firm and completely cooked.
Preparing the garnishes – While the sauce and shrimp were cooking, I prepared the garnishes. I stripped the mint leaves and the oregano leaves from the stems and coarsely chopped these.
Plating and serving – When all components were ready, I transferred the orzo to individual bowls and then spooned the shrimp and tomato sauce on top. I then garnished with FETA and the chopped mint and oregano and served.
On a Personal Note:
I love the quality of products that Sun Basket send. Everything is fresh, organic and as healthy as possible. I’m a great fan of Greek food, so I was excited when I saw this dish and was looking forward to it. Both my husband and I enjoyed every mouthful. However, I did have two issues with the dish. The portion size of the orzo was small and appeared to be insufficient, so I felt I needed to cook some additional rice. Also, they recommended adding some white wine during the cooking process but did not provide any. As this was a recipe inclusion I would have expected.
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