Sunday, July 1, 2012

Hello, It's Me

Channeling a little Todd Rundgren for you.

(BTW - my spellcheck isn't working tonight. Go ahead and judge. I would.)

So, I've been totally MIA for a while. Mostly because of the same old excuse - schedules haven't allowed for much cooking here. Partly because I'm getting a little bit bored of the blog. But mostly the schedule thing. As I've noted before, I'm not tired of the challenge or the cooking in and of itself, but the whole documenting all of the meals thing is feeling a little tired.

Luckily for you (ha) I'm in the mood to post tonight, and I have a feeling that there might be a bunch of posts in the next week before we hit the beach. Plus, as of tomorrow night, all of our travel sports will be done for at least a few weeks. Woo!

Now let's get on with the task at hand.

Unless you are reading this from some faraway locale, you are experiencing the same heatwave we are. I am not going to complain about it because I prefer to reserve my weather-related complaints for the winter/snow/ice/gray, and I think it would be a bit hypocritical on my part. I despise the winter and will always take 100 degrees and humidity (and bad hair) over snow any day.

The heat inspired me to focus on salads and grilled items this week. Peeps, we don't have air in this old house, so the last thing I want to do is stand over a hot stove or fire up the oven for an extended period of time. Plus, it gives me a fun theme for these posts.

Chicken and Wild Rice Salad with Almonds
Source: Cooking Light, December 2009

  • 1/4 c. fig vinegar or white wine vinegar (used white wine)
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp dijon
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 2 tbsp canola oil
Remaining ingredients:
  • 2 c. chicken broth (used no-salt added)
  • 1.5 c. uncooked wild rice
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1 lbs boneless, chicken breast
  • salt/pepper to taste
  • 1 c. chopped celery
  • 1/2 c. shredded carrots
  • 1/3 c. dried cranberries
  • 1/4 c. chopped almonds
  • 2 tbsp minced red onion (skip)
  • Prepare dressing: Combine first 5 ingredients in medium bowl. Add oil, stirring with a whisk until well blended. Cover and chill.
  • Combine broth, rice and butter in a med saucepan; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat and simmer 45 mins or until rice is tender and liquid is absorbed. Remove rice from heat and cool.
  • Grill chicken; cool; cut into cubes.
  • Combine rice, chicken, celery, carrots, cranberries, almonds and onion in a large bowl. Add dressing, toss to coat. Cover and chill.
Yield: 6 servings (1-1/3 c./serving)
Per serving: 352 cals; 10.3g fat (2g sat, 5g mono, 2.5g poly); 25g protein; 40.6g carb; 4g fiber; 49mg chol; 357mg sodium

My laziness overpowered my budget-consciousness, so I bought pre-chopped celery, pre-shredded carrots and pre-sliced almonds. This resulted in a super-easy-to-throw-together meal. Chef Hubs pitched in and grilled (and cut up) the chicken, so the most time-consuming portion of this recipe was the sitting around and waiting for the rice to cook. I only wish I had more time (patience) to let the salad cool down more (I stuck it in the freezer for 10 minutes), but we all really enjoyed the chow.

Four Forks

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