The Story of the Shrimp, the cabbage, and the orzo

by Joanne on March 22, 2011

Funning, we’re 4 weeks out from the big race (Boston Marathon) and I come across my post from last year.   I had the live broadcast on at work.  In fact, I’ve watched the live broadcast for Boston the last two years, never in my wildest dreams thinking I’d be running it.  Got to get excited about that. 

In my post from last year, I mention how I’d go out of my mind waiting until 10:30 to run. 


Well, now I have to wait until 10:40 but I know I won’t go crazy and I will wait with all the excitement and trepidation that the mind musters up right before a race.  I’ll deal with it. 

FYI: From the Farmers Almanac  for April…

16th-19th. Becoming unsettled, with showers New England down the Mid-Atlantic Coast. Patriot’s Day could be wet

Question:  What do you do before a race or event to calm your nerves? Do you have affirmations that you repeat? Do you do any physically calming exercises? 

“The Shrimp, The Cabbage, and The Orzo”

… and they all lived happily ever after.  A wonderful end to a fairy tale. But this isn’t a fairy tale. This is a true story and the ending is delightful.


Baked Shrimp, Cabbage and Orzo – Serves 8



  • 3 cups sliced cabbage (I used red and Napa)
  • 1/2 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 1 TBS minced garlic
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried hot red pepper flakes – or more to taste
  • 15 oz can petite sweet peas
  • (2) 10 oz can cream of mushroom soup + 2 cans of hot water
  • 1 jar button mushrooms, drained
  • 1 lb large shrimp, shelled and deveined
  • 1/2 lb orzo (rice-shaped pasta) – cooked
  • 1 cup cheese (I used reduced fat shredded 4 Cheese Italian Blend)

Preheat oven to 375°F.

Add all “cast members” , aka ingredients, EXCEPT THE CHEESE to a large casserole dish and stir to distribute evenly.

Cover with non-stick foil or a loose fitting lid that doesn’t touch the cheese. *If using foil and it’s not non-stick, spray lightly with non-stick cooking spray so the cheese doesn’t stick to it.

Bake for 1 hour. Uncover and bake for 15 more minutes. Let sit for 5 – 10 minutes before eating ENJOYING the show.


IF YOU DON’T LIKE OR ARE ALLERGIC TO SHELLFISH…. replace the shrimp with sautéed chicken  pieces (simply brown on all sides but not cooked all the way through), or beef chunks (the same as chicken, browned but not cooked through), or even ground beef or turkey – cook until browned in a sauté pan.


The original idea for this “fairy tale” came from Zesty Cook’s recipe for “Simple Cabbage Casserole”.

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  • At 2011.03.22 06:56, Medeja said:

    It looks nice! Another great, colorful and filling dish 🙂

    • At 2011.03.22 10:59, Joanne said:

      Thanks Medeja

      • At 2011.03.22 09:06, Marcia said:

        Thanks for visiting my blog!
        The key to avoid the waiting for the second wave in Boston is don’t board the bus until late. Both years I think I got there at 6:30 and waited in long lines, so when we got to Athletes Village there was literally time for a potty break and walk to the corrals. No waiting at all!
        That orzo looks delish!

        • At 2011.03.22 10:58, Joanne said:

          That sounds good. But I’d be SO nervous about not getting in my 25 porta-potty trips.

          • At 2011.03.22 09:53, Heather said:

            Shrimp and orzo are SO GOOD together – yum!

            Before a race I try not to get to the line up too early. Otherwise I drive myself crazy with anticipation. If I get there right as we’re starting I have less chance of second guessing my abilities!

            • At 2011.03.22 10:58, Joanne said:

              Great advice. I wish I could do that. I’m one of those people who get all bent out of shape about being late. That doesn’t change come race time so I further the agony by getting to the line up early then listening to all the conversations that psych me out. Oh to be different!

              • At 2011.03.22 11:53, katie said:

                wow, running boston? you go, girl!

                • At 2011.03.22 16:09, claudia lamascolo said:

                  Wow what great color and pictures lovely my dear~

                  • At 2011.03.22 21:31, kalli said:

                    how exciting for you! and yes you should be proud that you are running boston! what an acomplishment 🙂 dinner looks delicious. i love anything with shrimp in it.

                    • At 2011.03.23 23:35, MichaelRunner said:

                      I don’t have any tips for pre race jitters. I don’t get them till I’m lined up and then its only a few minutes until the race starts anyway. Its all gone after a mile. Of course, I’ve never run a race like Boston either…

                      Its exciting seeing everyone I know getting ready for Patriots Day.

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