Lemon Basil Orzotto




  • tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • cup diced onion
  • 1 1/2 cups orzo or pearl barley
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • cups chicken stock or low-sodium broth
  • 1/2 cup frozen petite green peas
  • 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • tablespoons chiffonade fresh basil
  • teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper


In a heavy-bottomed medium saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the onion and saute until fragrant and translucent. Add the orzo and toast for 2 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the wine and cook until absorbed. 

Gradually add the chicken stock, stirring frequently. Bring to a simmer, lower the heat, and cover. Cook for 8 to 10 minutes, until the liquid is almost absorbed and orzo is tender. Remove from the heat. 

Stir in peas, Parmesan, fresh basil, lemon zest, heavy cream, and lemon juice. Season the orzo with salt and pepper, to taste, and serve.