One of my favorite Christmas gifts this year was a new programmable crock pot. No more overcooking dinner when it cooks all day! I’ve been trying all kinds of different recipes while I’ve been off work, just to see how it performs. (So far, so good.) I was looking for something to do with all those oranges in this week’s box, and thought an orange chicken dish would be good. This Food.com recipe for Orange Stir Fry Sauce sounded really good. I added a little ginger to spice it up a bit.
Broccoli is in season, so I’ve been ordering it with every box. I decided to go with a spicy version this time, loosely based on several different recipes I saw on line. I wasn’t sure how well broccoli would roast, but it actually turned out pretty good! The crushed red pepper flakes gave it nice flavor, and just a bit of heat.
I had to make a quick dinner tonight, as I had to work late (again) and we had our church mission in the evening. I decided to steam the broccoli in the microwave. After it was cooked, I tossed it with some olive oil and several dashes of cayenne pepper.
How simple is that? No recipe required, and it could also be prepared on the stove top.
I worked a lot of extra hours this week, and felt like I was neglecting my blog a bit. When I was making out my menu plan this week, I wanted to make a main dish with the broccoli. The idea I decided to try was a little too time consuming for a busy week night, so I ended up making this on a weekend. However, you could put this together on the weekend, and then just do the final baking during the week. The inspiration for the cheese sauce came from about.com.
Bring a medium pot of water to a boil. Add orzo and broccoli, continue to boil until orzo is cooked to al dente, about 6-8 minutes. Drain
While the orzo is cooking, melt the butter in a Dutch oven. Stir in flour and cook slowly, until bubbly. Gradually add milk, cook, stirring constantly, until thickened and boiling. Boil 1 minute. Add cheese and seasonings, stir until cheese melts. Remove from heat.
Add drained orzo and chicken to cheese sauce, stir to combine. Pour into an 11 X 7 pan that has been sprayed with non stick cooking spray. Cover and bake for 20 minutes.
My original plan for the broccoli was to steam it. However, I found this recipe for Cream of Broccoli Soup on allrecipes.com. The day I started to make it, I found out that it takes a LOT of broccoli to make this soup. The 2 small heads we got in the box would have been enough for 1 bowl. I bought another big head and got enough for a total of 2 bowls. The end result was worth it, though; because this was absolutely delicous!