Nagia's orzo and smoked eel

Time 30 minutes
Yields Serves 2
Nagia’s orzo and smoked eel
(Ricardo DeAratanha / Los Angeles Times)

Place the olive oil and butter in a deep skillet and heat over medium heat. Stir in the chopped fennel bulb and cook, stirring, until wilted, about 2 to 4 minutes. Add the orzo and stir to coat the pasta. Pour over the ouzo.


As soon as the alcohol steams off, stir in the broth and garlic. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat and stir until the orzo has absorbed almost all the liquid, 6 to 8 minutes. Stir in the eel, lemon juice and fennel. Stir for a minute, then remove from heat and cover.


Set the mixture aside for 5 to 7 minutes to absorb any excess liquid. Serve hot, with freshly ground pepper. This makes a scant 2 cups orzo.

Smoked eel is available at select markets as well as online. Smoked trout can be substituted.

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