I wasn’t 100% sold on this dish as I was cooking it — but it was a real winner! The flavors are simple, but come together beautifully. I chopped the chicken and mixed it with the orzo, but you could plate it with a whole chicken breast to make it a little fancier :)
Herb-Rubbed Chicken with Creamy Orzo
8 oz. orzo pasta, uncooked
2 chicken breasts, butterflied into halves (4 pieces total)
Salt and pepper
2 tsp. Herbes de Provence (I made a homemade version here)
2 tbsp. olive oil
1 shallot, finely chopped (I used onion)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes, with juices
2 cups broccoli florets
½ cup heavy cream
1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
– Bring a saucepan of salted water to boil. Add the orzo and cook until tender but still firm to the bite, about 10 minutes. Drain the pasta, reserving ½ cup of the pasta water.
– Season both sides of the chicken breast halves with salt and pepper. Sprinkle evenly with the Herbes de Provence.
– Heat the olive oil in a 12- or 14-inch skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chicken breast halves to the pan and cook about 3 minutes per side, until golden brown. Reduce the heat to medium, add the shallot to the pan and sauté 2-3 minutes.
– Add the garlic and sauté an additional minute, until fragrant. Add the diced tomatoes with juices and the broccoli florets to the pan, scraping the bottom of the pan to remove any browned bits. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to simmer over medium-low. Cover and let cook until the broccoli florets are crisp-tender, about 10 minutes.
– Stir in the cooked orzo, heavy cream and Parmesan cheese. Mix until well blended and the cheese has melted.
– If necessary, add some of the reserved pasta water to smooth out the sauce. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
– Serve immediately.