Orzo (Italian for "barley", from Latin hordeum), also risoni (Italian: "big rice"), is a form of short-cut pasta, shaped like a large grain of rice. Orzo can be served alone, as a soup accompaniment, as part of a salad or pilaf, or baked in a casserole.
Orzo is similar to Ptitim or "Ben Gurion Rice" in Israeli cuisine, κριθαράκι (kritharáki) ("little barley") in Greek cuisine, arpa şehriye in Turkish cooking, and lisān al-`uṣfūr ("songbird tongue") in Arabic cooking.
Orzo is often boiled in Italian soups, like minestrone. It also is boiled and lightly fried, to resemble risotto.