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Toasted Orzo and Chicken Pilaf with Green Olives and Peas

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  • Total Time:
  • Servings: 4 TO 6

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  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 1/2 pounds skinless, boneless chicken thighs, cut into 2-inch pieces
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups orzo (10 ounces)
  • 2 scallions, thinly sliced
  • 1 large garlic clove, minced
  • Pinch of crushed red pepper
  • One 14-ounce can diced Italian tomatoes, drained
  • 3 cups chicken stock or canned low-sodium broth
  • 3/4 cup pitted green olives (3 ounces), coarsely chopped
  • 3/4 cup frozen baby peas
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped flat-leaf parsley


  1. In a large nonstick skillet, heat the olive oil until shimmering. Season the chicken with salt and pepper, add it to the skillet and cook over high heat, stirring occasionally, until browned, about 8 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the chicken to a plate.
  2. Add the orzo to the skillet and cook, stirring occasionally, until golden, about 3 minutes. Add the scallions, garlic and crushed red pepper and cook, stirring, for 30 seconds. Stir in the diced tomatoes, chicken stock, olives and peas, scraping up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Stir in the browned chicken along with any accumulated juices. Cover and simmer over moderately low heat until the broth is nearly absorbed and the orzo is al dente, about 15 minutes. Stir in the parsley and fluff with a fork. Spoon the pilaf into shallow bowls and serve at once.
Contributed By Published February 2003

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