Orzo pasta is shaped like rice, and is often confused with risotto. Orzo is a lot easier to make. This is a wonderful version becauses it uses butter, Mascarpone and Parmesan cheese. The Orzo oozes with this creamy, cheesy concoction and delivers a good hit of black pepper. Saffron is often used when Orzo is to be served with Osso Buco. If you have saffron, just add a few threads with the butter and cheese to make a true Milanese pasta.
Orzo Pasta with Mascarpone and Parmesan
- 1 lb Orzo pasta
- 1 tsp salt
- 4 ½ cups liquid I used 1 cup veal stock, 1 cup chicken stock and 2 ½ cups water
- 2 TB mascarpone cheese
- 2 TB butter
- 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 TB Fresh ground black pepper
Bring the pasta and liquids to a boil in a large pot. Cook for approximately 8 - 10 minutes or until the liquid is just about absorbed and the pasta is al dente. Do not drain the pasta. The rest of the liquid will be absorbed as the pasta continues cooking.
Turn off the heat. Add the mascarpone, butter and mix in until the cheese and butter have melted making a creamy sauce.
Add the parmesan and pepper and mix well again to incorporate all ingredients.
Transfer to a large pasta bowl or serving platter, Serve Immediately. Garnish with gremolata or fresh minced flat leaf parsley.
Note: Since this is a traditional side dish for Osso Buco, I used some leftover veal stock from that recipe and an 8 oz box of chicken stock as part of the liquid. You can use all water, or any other liquid to customize your flavor for your dish.