(6 servings)

2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts or small thighs
1 tsp. dried oregano
1 tsp. paprika
1/4-1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
salt and black pepper
2 Tbsp. butter
1 medium shallot, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced or grated
1 cup dry orzo pasta
1/2 cup dry white wine, such as Pinot Grigio or Sauvignon Blanc
1 cup heavy cream (I cut this in half to 1/2 cup)
1 1/2 to 2 cups chicken broth
2 tsp. Dijon mustard
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
2 cups fresh baby spinach
1/2 cup oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, oil drained
juice of 1 lemon
fresh rosemary or basil for serving (optional)

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Heat 1 Tbsp. olive oil in a large oven-safe skillet set over medium-high heat.
Rub the chicken with 1 Tbsp. olive oil, oregano, paprika, red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper.
When the oil is shimmering, add the chicken. Sear on both sides until golden, about 3-5 minutes per side.
Remove the chicken from the skillet.

To the same skillet, add the butter and shallot, cooking until fragrant, about 3 minutes.
Add the garlic and orzo, cooking until lightly golden, 2-3 minutes.
Add the wine and de-glaze the pan.
Add 1 1/2 cups chicken broth. Bring to a boil, cook 3-5 min., stirring and adding more broth as pasta cooks.
Then add the cream, mustard, parmesan, spinach, and sun-dried tomatoes, stirring until the spinach has wilted, and push all orzo off side of pan into liquid.
Slide the chicken and any juices left on the plate back into the skillet. Transfer to the oven and cook, uncovered, for 10-15 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through.
Serve the chicken topped with lemon juice and rosemary, if desired.

[TIP: If using chicken breasts, I used boneless, skin on, pounded to flatten to similar thickness and soaked in buttermilk overnight. Removed from buttermilk and dried with paper towels and then proceeded with olive oil and seasoning.]

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