Broccoli and Orzo Casserole

  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus 1 tablespoon melted and more for greasing dish
  • Salt
  • 1 cup dry orzo pasta
  • 6 cups broccoli florets (about 12 ounces)
  • 2 tablespoons plain flour
  • 1 small onion, diced (about 1/2 cup)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded Havarti
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 3 tablespoons grated Parmesan, or vegetarian alternative
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs

Preheat the oven to 190°C. Butter a 2-quart casserole dish.

Bring a large pot of generously salted water to a boil. Add the orzo, stir and cook for 5 minutes. Add the broccoli florets and cook until bright green, about 1 minute. Strain and set aside.

Heat a large pot or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the butter and flour, whisk together and cook for about 1 minute. Add the onions and garlic and cook, stirring, until the onions have softened, about 5 minutes. Whisk in the milk, bring the sauce to a low boil, reduce to a simmer and simmer gently for about 5 minutes. Turn off the heat and add 1 cup of the Havarti, sour cream, 2 tablespoons of the Parmesan, 1 teaspoon salt and pepper to taste. Gently fold in the broccoli and orzo.

Transfer the mixture to the buttered casserole dish. Sprinkle with the remaining 1/2 cup Havarti and 1 tablespoon Parmesan. Toss the bread crumbs with the remaining 1 tablespoon melted butter in a small bowl. Season with salt and spread evenly over the casserole. Bake until brown and bubbly, about 30 minutes.

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