Caesar roasted broccoli with whole-wheat orzo and almonds is one of the easiest dinners you’ll ever make!
Easter is one of my favourite times of year. It’s not just that the children dress as witches and go trick or treating, a tradition I adore (they’re such cute little witches!), or that people hand you gigantic eggs filled with amazing treats instead of torturous egg hunting. It’s really the kickoff to the best time of year. Sweden loads all of their holidays into the spring and summer, so Easter is, other than the Christmas holidays, the first time a long weekend rolls around since July or August. And it’s such a welcome thing after weathering the long and dark winter here.
If I was a better blogger I’d have some Easter themed dish for you today. Or I probably would have had one a week or so ago to give you some time to plan your Easter menu. But I’m not, so you get this instead.
I wanted to post this recipe before too much time passes, since it uses the same dressing as the Kale Caesar with Roasted Chickpeas I posted earlier this week. If you make that salad, and I hope you do, you should have a good amount of the dressing left over. So, for a quick and easy weeknight dinner, toss some broccoli florets in a bit of leftover Caesar dressing and roast until delightfully crunchy. Meanwhile, boil up some whole wheat orzo, and chop a few almonds. Then, it’s a quick toss of everything together, a sprinkling of parm, and dinner is done.
If you’d prefer to swap out the orzo for a whole grain like farro or kamut, by all means, go for it. But with this dish it was speed I was after, and I’ve had a bag of orzo kicking around in my cupboard forever (thaaaaanks Buh!) so it was high time I used it.
You already knew that Broccoli is good for you, right? It is a great source of vitamin C, dietary fiber, and high broccoli consumption is thought to be beneficial in the prevention of heart disease and some cancers. Whole wheat pasta, made from flour with the bran and germ intact, is a significantly better source of fiber and nutrients than the regular wheat version. Bear in mind that pasta portions, particularly in restaurants, are often waaaaaaay larger than they should be. Aim for around a 1 cup serving of cooked whole wheat pasta.
- 2 heads broccoli broken into florets (4 cups florets)
- 4 Tbsp leftover Caesar dressing*
- 450g / 1lb whole wheat orzo
- ¼ cup almonds, roughly chopped
- extra dressing and Parmesan to serve
- Preheat your oven to 200°C / 400°F.
- In a bowl, toss the broccoli florets with 4 Tbsp leftover Caesar dressing, using your hands if need be to ensure the broccoli is evenly coated.
- Spread the broccoli on a baking sheet and roast for about 20 minutes. The broccoli should have some golden and crispy bits, but should still be a bit toothsome, not mushy.
- While the broccoli is roasting, set a pot of water over high heat and bring it to the boil. Salt generously, then add the orzo. Cook for about 5-7 minutes, or according to package instructions, until orzo is al dente. Drain well, and transfer the orzo to the same bowl that the broccoli was tossed in previously.
- Add the roasted broccoli and chopped almonds to the orzo, and toss to combine. Taste, and season with a bit more Caesar dressing if needed.
- Serve hot, cold, or room temperature, garnished with slivers of Parmesan.
This dish is really lovely topped with a poached for fried egg for some added protein.