And Lil' Bernadette has decided the mulch on the outside of the chicken run is much more to her liking than the mulch on the inside of the run. She has taken to "flying the coop" and spending the day bustling around in the oak leaves and detris that surround our chicken run. She hasn't quite figured out that she can get back in the same way, however.
The Meal Plan:
Sun (L) leftover pasta (S) Pork chops with Brussels sprouts and apples
Mon (yoga) leftover chops
Tues (Virginia/Vet appt) Hawaiian fried rice
Wed- leftover rice
Thurs (yoga) - leftover rice
Sat (L) out (S) Leftover soup
Lunches - Creamy slow cooked chicken wild rice soup, cornbread muffins, fruit, yogurt, Luna bars
Slow Cooked Creamy Chicken Wild Rice Soup (Rachel Cooks blog via Pinterest) gluten free
My kind of recipe - chop, plop, walk away. My kind of recipe - lots of carrots and celery. Check it out! TWO cups of each. Love it!
Two substitution's: one was turkey tenderloins for the chicken thighs. Co-op didn't have any thighs this week and the chicken breasts were nearly double in price what the turkey tenderloins were. No brainer. Went with the turkey.
Much to my great surprise, this cooks up into a nice thick - perhaps too thick - soup, which I'm going to attribute to my use of instant brown rice. Now, I like a thick soup, so not a biggie. I will also note, this turned out very bland, so much so the husband commented on it. This needed salt at serving time. Otherwise, a very hearty and warming soup for late winter and early spring.
|photo from Rachel Cooks blog|
- 1 1/2 cups uncooked wild and brown rice blend (I used 2/3c instant brown rice and 2/3c wild rice)
- 1 package Just BARE Boneless Skinless Chicken Thighs (about 1.5 pounds)
- 1 large onion, diced (a heaping cup)
- 2 cups chopped celery
- 2 cups chopped carrots
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 teaspoons dried parsley
- 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/2 teaspoon ground sage
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 4 cups no-salt added chicken stock
- 3 cups water
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- milk or water as necessary to thin soup
- Combine all ingredients except cream in a large slow cooker.
- Cook on low for 6-8 hours. Remove bay leaves and discard. Remove chicken thighs, shred and return to slow cooker.
- In a medium bowl, place 1/2 cup heavy cream. Slowly whisk 1-2 cups of hot soup into cream. Then, slowly pour that mixture back into the slow cooker while whisking.
- Taste and season with salt and pepper as needed before serving.
Pork Chops with Sauteed apples and Brussels Sprouts (Ckng Lght, Mar 2016) gluten free
Easy!! Soo easy! Except I slightly burnt the Brussels sprouts. I will fully admit, I do not get along with my broiler. I also think the sprouts could be cooked in the pan just before the apples are added to make this a one-pot dish. Other than that, easy to assemble, good flavor, fast to get to the table.
12oz Brussels sprouts, halved
|Photo from Scifi with Paprika Blog|
5/8 tsp kosher salt, divided
4 (4oz) boneless center-cut pork chops
2 tbsp unsalted butter, divided
12 oz sliced Honeycrisp apple (1 large apple)
1/3 cup unsalted chicken stock
1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
3 tbsp maple syrup
2 tbsp Dijon mustard
1) preheat broiler to high. Set oven rack on the middle shelf. (I did high, middle rack, and I still managed to lightly burn my sprouts)
2) Combine sprouts, 1 tbsp oil, 1/4 tsp salt, 1/4 tsp pepper in a bowl and toss to coat. Arrange sprouts in a single layer on a jelly-roll pan coated in cooking spray (I line with aluminum foil first, then spray) Broil 12 minutes, stirring every three minutes.
3) Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add remaining 1 tbsp oil; swirl to coat. Sprinkle pork with 1/4 tsp salt and remaining 1/4 tsp pepper. Add to pan. Cook remaining 3 minutes. Turn; cook 2 minute or until done. Transfer pork to a plate.
4) Add 1 tbsp butter and apple to pan; saute 2 minutes. Add stock and nutmeg; bring mixture to a boil. Stir in remaining 1/8 tsp salt, remaining 1 tbsp butter, syrup, Dijon mustard, and parsley; cook 1 minute. Divide chops among four plates; top evenly with apple mixture. Serve with sprouts.
Hawaiian Fried Rice (The Recipe Critic via Pinterest) gluten free** vegetarian option
The recipe author notes on her blog how incredibly easy this super tasty dish is to pull together, and she's not kidding. This is great for leftover ham because it doesn't come across as a Oh gosh, another day of ham! type dish.
I used two bags (small size) of Uncle Ben's instant white rice. Brown would also work fine, but I felt like white rice tonight. As the rice cooks, I prepped the veggies and drained the pineapple. Use your 14" skillet for this! Then it was assemble as directed!
A side note - rice made the day before is usually best for "fried rice" recipes. In a pinch (like for tonight's meal), I allowed the rice packets to drain, then I spread the rice out on a floursack towel and let cool. The towel absorbs some of the excess moisture, and spreading it out even briefly allows the steam to release. You'll get a better fried rice dish by doing that.
I really liked this dish, and I can see having this as a back-up meal for hectic weeks. I usually don't have ham on hand, but I could see this made with Spam (don't groan! It's pretty tasty and would be perfect in this dish!) Not a meat eater - substitute baked tofu for the ham, or skip completely and add additional veggies.
30 minutes start to table
- 1½ cups- 2 cups chopped ham (or skip and add more veggies)
- 1 small white onion, chopped
- 1 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
- 1 Tablespoon Vegetable Oil
- 3 eggs, lightly beaten
- 3 cups cooked rice
- 1 cup pineapple tidbits (drained!)
- 1 Tbs sesame oil
- 2-3 Tablespoons soy sauce (more or less to taste)** watch for gluten!
2 Tbsp chopped green onions (optional)
- Preheat a large skillet or wok to medium heat. Pour vegetable oil in the bottom. Add chopped ham, white onion, and red bell pepper and fry until tender.
- Slide the ham onion, and red bell pepper to the side, and pour the beaten eggs onto the other side. Using a spatula, scramble the eggs. Once cooked, mix the eggs with the vegetable mix.
- Add the rice and pineapple to the veggie, ham and egg mixture. Pour the soy sauce and sesame oil on top. Stir and fry the rice and veggie mixture until heated through and combined. Add chopped green onions if desired.