I’ve owned plenty of cookbooks in my lifetime.  More than I need, more than I’ll ever be able to cook from,  even if I tried a new recipe every day and lived to 105 years old.  Seasoned cookbook enthusiast that I am, my next statement may surprise you, but don’t take it lightly:  Radically Simple by Rozanne Gold is my favorite.  Ever!  No other book tempts me to cook every single recipe within it, as this one does.  All her recipes are appealing, not for their simplicity, but because she always transforms a few ingredients into something special, something different, something unique and enticing.  Take this humble orzo, for example, and dress it up just right.

(reprinted with permission from Rozanne Gold)

6 oz baby carrots
2Tbs butter
8 oz orzo pasta
1 + 1/2 cups chicken stock
1  to 1 + 1/2 cup water
1 garlic clove
salt and pepper
1/4 cup Parmigiano Reggiano cheese
1/2 cup chopped chives, divided (I used parsley)

Place the baby carrots in the bowl of a food processor and process a few times, until the pieces are a little bigger than the grains of orzo.

Melt the butter in a saucepan, add the orzo and carrots, season lightly with salt and pepper, and cook for 5 minutes stirring often, until the pasta starts to get a golden color and is fragrant.  Add the chicken stock, 3/4 of the water, the garlic clove squeezed through a press, and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the liquid is almost all absorbed and the pasta is tender, about 12 minutes. You may or may not need to add all the water. Add the Parmigiano cheese, 1/3 cup of the chives, and gently mix. Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper, garnish with the remaining chives, and…


to print the recipe, click here

Comments:  If all recipes in this cookbook please me as much as this one, it will be hard to cook from a different source!  ;-)  Toasting the orzo and treating it like Arborio rice in a risotto preparation considerably changes the texture of the pasta.  Orzo has a tendency to be a bit “slippery”, but not in this dish: it feels wholesome, binding nicely with the other components.   The bits of carrots give a hint of sweetness and add a lot to the dish.  I had to exert extreme self-control to put the leftovers in the fridge, instead of leaving them in front of us while we talked after dinner.  Those can be very caloric conversations!

Radically Simple is a must-have if you love great food, with interesting twists in the preparation.  A pasta that cooks in the oven without ever seeing a drop of water?   It’s in there.  Using beets to make a veggie stock with unique color and flavor?  It’s there too. So, if you haven’t done so already, then order your copy now, and the moment it reaches your home lay on a comfy sofa, and savor it… 😉

ONE YEAR AGOA Sticky Situation

TWO YEARS AGO:  The Garden

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43 thoughts on “RADICALLY SIMPLE

  1. Oh, I have this book on my list, and will definitely order it now!

    very nice orzo dish, Sally, made my mouth water, the carrots look so perfect mixed with the pasta


  2. I know those caloric conversations well! This looks so good and your description is so….descriptive. It really paints the picture. I’ll have to keep my eyes open for this one the next time I’m in the cookbook section of the bookstore (which is ultimately where I always end up).🙂


  3. You’re so right, the simple (yet satisfying) meals are often the best. I think there has been such a phenomenon of making things stacked high on a big white plate in cookbooks we forget that’s never what we actually want to make at home! (look at me being all philosophical on a Saturday morning) Thanks for the post.


  4. My kind of recipe! Loved everything about it, I’m making it tonight, AND I’m getting the book too. With your endorsement, I know it’s going to be a hit. Plus, I love the name “Radically Simple” – very clever!


  5. Rozanne Gold rocks and so do you, Sally! I almost always toast orzo; it makes a big difference. Brands differ, too. I favor Barilla, but there may be better. It’s the best one I’ve been able to find.
    Have fun with this book. I can’t wait to purchase a copy.


    • I don’t remember ever toasting orzo, but I toasted couscous once and thought it was much better, although I had issues with some of it sticking to the bottom of the pan.

      I also like Barilla, some brands make orzo in a smaller size and slightly less “bulky” shape – not my favorite at all…


      • There is at least one brand of orzo (naturally, I cannot remember the name) with fat and starchy grains. Barilla is vastly superior.

        Though I can no longer eat wheat, I cook it for the rest of the family. Couscous always tasted like farina, which I disliked, to me. Toasting might well improve the taste.


  6. Okay so I clicked on “Read more of this post” and there appeared an awesome recipe Carrot “Nib” Orzo then I started reading the article which lead me to the Internet in search of the cookbook. I found it on Chapters and that they had 2 copies in two locations in Montreal. Took an afternoon drive downtown to pick up the cookbook which was $13 more than the Internet but I really needed this fix.

    OMG….like I need another cookbook but as the review said it’s a cookbook you’ll want to try them all…. I am starting with the Carrot “Nib” Orzo…… What a refreshing cookbook.🙂


    • You know, every year I make a resolution of NO MORE COOKBOOKS. Never been successful with it, but at least I know I’m not the only one with this “problem”


      • Sally, a friend and I were talking about this a while ago – there has to be a support group for people like us with too many cookbooks and recipes. lol


      • I made the Carrot “Nib” Orzo and the Roasted Sliced Cauliflower with Cheddar & Rosemary…..both delicious! Thank you for recommending a great cookbook. I can’t wait to try more.


  7. Sally that looks soooo tempting, I must try it. And of course now you’ve persuaded me to buy the book, I was wavering.
    I need a new bookshelf!


  8. Will try that tomorrow with grilled halibut!! Do try the chicken thighs with rosemary and smoked paprika..we love it here in Oakville!!


    • There’s another pasta I do that sometimes, it’s the “fideo”, thinner than angel hair pasta, I break into small pieces, toast and toast together with rice – my gosh, that’s good! I must make it and blog about it soon.


  9. I smiled when I read your line that orzo can be slippery! So true!! I just made orzo yesterday with only a mix of herbs and olive oil (darn slippery!) I so wish I had seen this before; I love the addition of carrots and lightly sauting the orzo and carrots beforehand. I’m looking forward to trying this and also checking out that cookbook. I too own plenty of cookbooks but there are truly only very few I could say I would make every recipe in them!


    • Well, you cannot possibly tease me like that! Do tell me another cookbook that you want to try everything from…. not that I “need” any more cookbooks, you understand… it’s a rhetorical question, one that will NOT, I repeat NOT affect my decisions as far as amazon.com is concerned.


  10. Darlene, I could not reply directly under your comment – a small flaw from WordPress, I guess, it limits the size of the conversations going in comments…. Anyway, glad you enjoyed that, I also noticed that cauliflower recipe you mentioned, it’s on my list to try. Soon. You know… good intentions 😉


  11. I love simple recipes, especially in the summer when you don’t want to spend too much time in a hot kitchen (no a/c). I love the wonderful color of this dish.


  12. Sally, it took two months, but I finally made this recipe. Delicious! Spouse said to pass along a big “Bravo!” to you.

    I used chives, and it was great. As Spouse commented, it looked good, too. Definitely a keeper.


    • Anne, how cool! Thanks for letting me know, it is a delicious recipe indeed, I made it again twice after posting it, so easy, and impressive

      Glad your husband and you enjoyed it too…

      thanks for stopping by!


  13. Pingback: Hapa-tite — Curry Pork Tenderloin #SecretRecipeClub

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