This was a lovely vegetarian dish. I really love Ottolenghi's recipes. It did however wreck my pan as it all stuck to the bottom of my pan! This is chock full of vegetables, especially a couple of autumn staples like carrots and celery.
Baked Orzo with Mozzarella and Oregano (from Plenty More - Ottolenghi)
1 large aubergine, cut into 2cm dice
salt and pepper
100ml olive oil
4 medium carrots, peeled and cut into 1.5cm dice
3 celery stalks, cut into 1.5cm dice
1 medium onion, peeled and finely diced
3 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
250g orzo pasta, rinsed
1 tsp tomato paste
380ml vegetable stock
3 tbsp fresh oregano, chopped (or 1½ tbsp picked thyme leaves)
Grated zest of 1 lemon
120g hard mozzarella, cut into 1cm dice
40g parmesan, grated
3 medium tomatoes, cut into 1cm-thick slices
1 tsp dried oregano
Heat the oven to 180C. Heat the oil in a large frying pan, add the aubergine and cook for eight minutes on medium to high heat until golden brown, stirring occasionally. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on kitchen paper. Add the carrot and celery, fry for eight minutes, and transfer to kitchen paper. Lower the heat to medium, add the onion and garlic and cook, stirring, for five minutes. Stir in the orzo and tomato paste, and cook for two minutes.
Remove the pan from the heat and pour in the stock, fresh oregano and lemon zest. Add the cooked veg, mozzarella, parmesan, a teaspoon of salt and half a teaspoon of pepper. Mix well and transfer to a 21cm x 27cm ovenproof dish. Arrange the tomatoes on top, sprinkle with dried oregano and season.
Bake for 40 minutes, until all the liquid has been absorbed and the pasta is cooked. Remove, leave to settle for five minutes and serve hot.