Mason has loved feta cheese since we let him try it a few months ago at Cava, a restaurant in Capitol Hill’s Eastern Market neighborhood. He hadn’t had it in awhile so last night I decided to prepare him a new dish starring the tangy cheese. I cut the feta into small cubes and tossed it with chopped steamed spinach and cooked orzo. The dish was so easy to make and it’s super versatile: I can serve it plain or toss it with fresh tomato sauce. I can also mix in lots of other veggies (tomatoes, sweet pepper, carrots, sweet potato, cauliflower) as well as chicken, beef, or salmon. Mason tried the orzo with just the spinach and feta today at lunch and he loved it.
A few words of advice before you start cooking… I used frozen organic spinach, which seemed like a great idea until I steamed it and saw all the stringy stems. I spent 10 minutes picking through the greens and cutting off the stems, and I probably missed some (it was a tangled mess!). It would have been much easier to use fresh spinach and remove the stems before steaming, or at least use frozen spinach without stems. Then there was the mess. By the time I finished mixing all the ingredients together, orzo was everywhere–on the kitchen floor, stuck to the bottom of my bare feet, in the sink, on the counter. Granted, I’m a messy cook — at times frighteningly similar to the storybook character Amelia Bedelia — so if you’re neat in the kitchen this is probably a non-issue.
Try out our recipe — and let us know what you think!
Orzo with Spinach & Feta
1 cup orzo
3/4 cup fresh spinach
1/3 cup feta cheese
1. Wash and chop spinach. Remove stems and steam until wilted. Drain, pat dry with paper towels, and set aside.
2. Cook orzo in boiling water with a splash of olive oil according to package directions. Drain and rinse with cold water. Set aside.
3. Chop feta cheese into tiny cubes and toss with drained orzo and spinach.
4. Freeze leftovers for up to three months.
Yield: 10 two-ounce portions