Orzo with Harissa and Aubergine

Orzo with Harissa and Aubergine

Orzo, also known as risoni, is a form of short-cut pasta that looks like yellow rice. You usually find it in salads and tomato-based dishes with a good dose of spice, and if you’re sick of tagliatelle. Here, it acts as a great complimentary texture to the soft aubergine and the slightly crispy kale, and it also becomes coated in the lemon-harissa sauce that is leftover from cooking the vegetables. As a hearty but not too heavy meal, you can’t get much better than this.

You’ll need:
(Feeds 2-3)
1/2 cup orzo
1 large aubergine, diced (skin left on)
1 large handful kale, roughly chopped
1 small handful fresh basil leaves, torn
around 20 cherry tomatoes, cut in half
the juice of 1/2 a lemon + a little grated zest
2-3 tablespoons Harissa paste
2-3 tablespoons olive oil
black pepper

Place the orzo into a pan and cover it with lightly salted water, allowing an inch or two of water above the orzo
Bring to the boil then simmer on a low heat for around 8 minutes, or until the orzo is just tender with a little bite (al dente)
Drain and rinse with cold water
In a large frying pan, heat a couple of tablespoons of olive oil
Add in 1 tablespoon of Harissa paste and stir
Add in the aubergine, set over a medium heat, and cook, stirring, until the aubergine cubes are almost tender – adding olive oil when necessary
Add in the tomatoes, the lemon juice and the rest of the Harissa paste, and cook for a few more minutes
Add in the kale and cook for a couple more minutes, stirring to coat everything well
Remove from the heat, stir in the torn basil leaves, season and serve immediately