Slow-Cooked Shrimp Orzo with Shallots & Dill

Today I have decided to talk about truths. (!) As a person the truth is, I hate lies, but sometimes we need to adjust. To adjust to a situation, to a white lie, to a lie that can save a marriage, or, to a post that needs to be presented according to the truths of the rest of the food world. And the rest of the food world, is now living the Harvest period of October where yellowish leafs have fallen, the sky is grey and bloom, rain is falling daily, the earth is wet and green, the crops are harvest and food bloggers across the globe, from UK to America & Canada, are posting all sorts of Autumn and semi-winter food and sweets.

And so I did too, in my 3 previous posts. But I lied. And since I am not the liar kind of person, I have decided to confess it today. You see in Cyprus we didn’t pick up the harvest yet. We didn’t have that healthy rain that feeds our earth or the leafs fallen, our earth is still so dry, everything around us remain dull and “dirty” and the farmers are not able to produce anything new. How could they after all, since in Cyprus is still summer! Yes, is STILL summer and it’s been summer for the last 7 or 8 months! And although I spoke about October, the second month of Autumn, with the same passion my fellow food bloggers did, I don’t live any Autumn at this period and it makes me both sad and disappointed.

And angry too. Because I want to create something new and get inspired by it. It is so tiring after all, to be living in summer for the 8 or 9 or 10 months every year. Endless summer all time long, with a sun that shines on top of your head for 300 days, surrounded by the endless blue waters of the Mediterranean Sea, being tanned all year round, feeling always hot with “nothing” to wear, wear sunglasses each and every time you are not at home, wear tones of day creams and protection cream on your face so you don’t get freckles or get an aged face, walk barefoot and let alone, allow your hair dry naturally and look like a mop!

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But since is still summer in Cyprus, since I live surrounded by the Mediterranean Sea and the Mediterranean diet that is filled with fresh fish and pure Greek and nutritious ingredients, I have chosen to share with you a post inspired and produced by all the above; A slow cooked Orzo pasta with fresh Mediterranean shrimps, shallots and dill.

This dish is easy and quick and is unbelievably taste. And you don’t need to worry about fresh shrimps if you can’t get any. Frozen do too, since the aromas and flavours are so intense that the original taste won’t change that much. Dill and shallots are easy to get found anywhere in this world and of course Orzo pasta is widely known and spread. And then, a key ingredient is the wine and I would strongly suggest to go for a Chardonnay, a velvety, white dry wine with rich citrus flavours, fermenting in barrels that add a tone of vanilla, coconut and honey. All these ingredients put together, will create a stunning and delicious dish, a slow cooked shrimp Orzo with shallots and dill, served, either on its own for a small gathering or among other dishes for a bigger event. I would also recommend an iron cast casserole – and between us, I do love STAUB iron cast-ware – where they preserve the heat and help in slow cooking. 

And here we are again. Back to where I started. Sharing a post that is all about summer food. But I guess, there is nothing I can do about it, but go with the flow of life. A life that although I don’t get the seasons I want whenever I want them, I am deeply grateful and cherish daily all the things I love so deeply; my adorable family, my good health and the ability to cook and create so many wonderful things.

And when the weather gives me lemons I make a lemonade!

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  • 20 Jumbo Shrimps, 14 peeled & deveined & 6 with shelve and head on
  • 90ml or an espresso cup, pure Greek olive oil
  • 500g Cherry & grape ripe tomatoes
  • 4 shallots, clean & cut into thin slices
  • 1 red onion, finely chopped
  • A handful, of finely chopped dill
  • A handfull, of finely chopped parsley
  • A generous pinch of Kosher salt
  • Black Pepper, optional
  • 500g Orzo pasta
  • 500g of slightly concentrated tomato juice
  • 1ltr of drinking water
  • 1 glass of Chardonnay white wine
  • In an iron cast casserole add the olive oil and allow to get hot before you add the onions.
  • Allow the onions to get soft (about 5 minutes) and add the shrimps.
  • Cook for ten minutes, until colour change to pink/red and stir constantly.
  • Add the wine and cook until reduced to half. Don’t forget to stir.
  • Add the dill and parsley, and stir for further, 2-3 minutes.
  • Finally add the Orzo pasta, stir well and add the drinking water.
  • Keep it in low heat until the water is absorbed to about 80%. Stir for one last time vey well.
  • Turn off heat and cover the casserole with lid. Allow to stand for 10 minutes until the juices are fully absorbed.

Tip: For these ingredients you need a 26″ iron cast casserole 

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