Chicken Burrito Bowls

In the mood for something Mexican, but wanting to keep the calorie count down, I tried making Chicken Burrito Bowls for the first time. The family loved it, as they could custom design their toppings to suit their tastes.

I sautéed marinated chicken and served it over white rice with a mix of both canned and fresh veggies. My only regret is that my cilantro was a little too wilted to use. Other than that, the results were great!

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Chicken Burrito Bowls

  • 3-4 chicken breasts, chopped into bite-size pieces
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground chili powder (I use Indian chili powder because it’s hotter)
  • 1 Tbsp taco seasoning
  • ½ tsp Adobo
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1 can corn, drained
  • 1 can black beans, drained
  • 1 can carrots, drained; or 4 carrots, peeled and cooked until tender
  • 2 tomatoes, chopped
  • 1/2 red onion, chopped
  • 1/2 cup cilantro, chopped
  • hot, cooked white rice

Combine cumin, chili powder, taco seasoning, and Adobo seasoning in large bowl; add chicken pieces and set aside while you prepare vegetables and make rice.

In a large skilled, saute garlic for one minute. Add in chicken pieces, sautéing until cooked through, about 5 to 7 minutes. Using slotted spoon, transfer chicken to bowl.

Add drained black beans to skillet, mixing well into remaining cooking juices.

To prepare burrito bowls: Spoon rice into bowl, top with chicken, spooning accumulated juices over rice. Top with black beans, corn, tomatoes, red onion, and cilantro. Serve immediately.

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Farfalle with Chicken, Zucchini & Tomato

If you don’t mind cutting fresh vegetables, this is another flavorful quick-fix one-dish meal. I know many families spend an hour or so on Sundays doing food prep for the week, but I’m one of those rare folks who finds using a knife relaxing.

For this meal, all you need is a fresh zucchini, a few fresh tomatoes, and some chicken breasts. It all comes together easily.

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Farfalle with Chicken, Zucchini & Tomato

  • 1 16–oz package farfalle, cooked in boiling water to al dente
  • 2 chicken breasts, cut into bite-size pieces
  • ¼ cup high-quality extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 garlic cloves, crushed
  • ½ yellow onion, minced
  • 1 large zucchini, diced
  • 1/2 tsp crushed rosemary
  • 3 Roma tomatoes, diced
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • sea salt and freshly ground pepper

In a large pot of salted water, boil pasta until al dente; drain but do not rinse. Set aside.

Heat oil in large skillet over medium-high heat; add garlic and saute for 1 minute. Mix in chicken breast pieces, coating well. Allow to cook, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned, about 5 to 7 minutes. Remove chicken and set aside, reserving any accumulated juices.

In the same skillet, mix zucchini and rosemary into remaining oil and garlic pieces, stirring well, for about 3 minutes, or until just becoming tender. Add in tomato and mix well. When warmed through, add chicken pieces and any juices; stir well. Add in juice of one lemon.

Toss in pasta, coating well with the chicken-zucchini mix. Season with sea salt and freshly ground pepper.

Serve hot topped with freshly grated Parmesan cheese.

Sautéed Brussels Sprouts & Buttered Rice

Unlike most teens, my sons love Brussels sprouts, probably because several years ago we had a family Brussels sprouts challenge. I bought the vegetable every week during the winter and challenged myself to prepare them a different way each time. In the process, we came across some magical mixes.

A surprising hit was this mixture of sautéed Brussels sprouts and buttered rice. The two flavors complement one another beautifully in this delicious dish.

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Sautéed Brussels Sprouts & Buttered Rice

  • 2 cups uncooked rice
  • 3.5 cups of water
  • 1/2 stick butter or margarine
  • 1 10-ounce package shaved Brussels sprouts
  • 1/2 onion, chopped
  • 1/2 stick butter or margarine
  • sea salt to taste

To prepare buttered rice, place rice, water, and butter in sauce pot; bring to boil, reduce, and simmer for exactly 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a separate skillet over medium heat, saute onion in melted butter until beginning to caramelize, about 15 minutes. Add in Brussels sprouts and stir until tender, about 5 to 7 minutes. Season with sea salt.

Transfer sautéed Brussels sprouts to buttered rice and mix well. Serve hot.

Thai Yellow Curry Shrimp with Spinach & Carrots

Continuing my trend of eating healthfully and using up leftover wine, I created this delicious curry dish featuring fresh shrimp, spinach, and carrots. Though it takes a few moments extra to peel and grate the carrots, their rich flavor is worth the extra trouble.

Cooking tip: use Gulf shrimp, not farm raised. Serve the curry over hot, cooked jasmine rice.

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Thai Yellow Curry Shrimp with Spinach & Carrots

  • 1 pound Gulf shrimp, peeled
  • 1 Tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1-inch-piece fresh ginger, peeled and minced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • ½ yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 carrots, peeled and grated
  • 3 small Yukon Gold potatoes, chopped
  • 1 Tbsp Mae Ploy Yellow Curry Paste
  • dash of cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 1 14-ounce can coconut milk
  • 1 10-ounce bag fresh spinach
  • hot, cooked jasmine rice

Rinse peeled shrimp and set aside.

In a large Dutch oven, sauté onion, carrots, and potatoes in oil, ginger, and garlic until tender. Stir in yellow curry paste and dash of cayenne pepper (add more if you want the curry spicier).

When thoroughly mixed, add white wine and coconut milk. Blend well. If you prefer a thinner sauce, add ½ to 1 can of water. Stir in shrimp.

When shrimp are pink, add spinach and stir until wilted. Serve immediately over hot cooked rice.

 

 

 

Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Chipotle-Infused Olive Oil

For Father’s Day, we toured Central Texas Olive Ranch in Georgetown, Texas. In addition to golf-carting through the groves, we also sampled six flavors of infused olive oils. It was impossible to pick the best, so we bought a sampler, with one of all six kinds.

This recipe uses the chipotle-infused extra virgin olive oil, but any high-quality EVOO will do.

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Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Chipotle-Infused Olive Oil

  • 2 Tbsp chipotle-infused extra-virgin olive oil
  • ½ tsp Himalayan pink sea salt
  • 1 pound Brussels sprouts, washed and trimmed

Preheat oven to 375°. Combine oil and salt in large bowl; set aside. Grease 11×7 baking pan; set aside.

Cut Brussels sprouts in half lengthwise. Place in olive oil and mix well. Transfer sprouts to prepared pan, cut side down, and bake until lightly browned, about 25-30 minutes. Serve hot.

 

Shrimp with Harissa & Squash

In an effort to eat more healthfully using ingredients I had on hand without running to the store, I created this delicious, quick-fix dish featuring shrimp and homegrown squash and zucchini.

We served it over cheese grits, but it would be equally good over brown rice or couscous just on its own.

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Shrimp with Harissa & Squash

  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 yellow onion, chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp harissa
  • 2 fresh zucchini, halved and sliced
  • 2 fresh yellow squash, halved and sliced
  • 1 pound fresh shrimp, peeled
  • sea salt to taste
  • hot freshly cooked polenta, brown rice, or couscous, if desired

In a skillet, sauté onion in olive oil until translucent; add garlic, chili powder, and Harissa and stir to blend. Add in zucchini and yellow squash, stirring frequently.

When squashes are just beginning to soften, add shrimp. Cook, stirring frequently, until shrimp is cooked through, about 3 to 5 minutes.

Serve over hot cooked polenta, brown rice, or couscous.

 

 

 

 

 

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Green Curry Lentils with Spinach

Understanding that diet can contribute to all sorts of health conditions—including rheumatoid arthritis (of which I was diagnosed today), I created this healthful and flavorful meatless meal featuring easy-to-cook green lentils for dinner tonight.

This meal is influenced by the flavors of Thailand and India. It’s packed with all kinds of goodness.

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Green Curry Lentils with Spinach

  • 2 Tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 5 garlic cloves
  • 1-inch grated fresh ginger
  • 1-2 Tbsp May Ploy Green Curry Paste
  • 2 cups dried green lentils
  • 1 14-ounce can diced tomatoes
  • 4 cups boiling water
  • 1 14-ounce can coconut milk
  • 1 10-ounce bag fresh baby spinach
  • hot, freshly cooked basmati or jasmine rice

In a large skillet or Dutch oven, sauté onion in oil until translucent. Add garlic, ginger, and green curry paste until well blended.

Stir in lentils and canned tomatoes and blend. Add hot water and cook until lentils are tender, about 15 minutes. Stir in coconut milk until well blended. Right before serving, mix in spinach and stir until slightly wilted.

Serve over hot cooked rice if desired.