Two Easy and Delicious Weeknight Meals

Hi all! I’d like to share with you two meals I made this week that were super easy, super delicious, and super nutritious. You can whip them up within 20-30 minutes. I also made extra and can testify that they make great leftovers too. So, without further ado…..

Recipe #1 – Sweet and Sour Chicken!

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You know when you get that craving for chinese food? For those little white cartons filled with soft, pillow-y rice, for those sauces that seep into every cranny, for chicken in every way – orange, sweet and sour, general tso’s-style? Well my friends, this is a recipe for you. Not only is it easy, but you can whip it up with ingredients you likely already have in your kitchen.

I used this recipe from Cooking Light, but I made some changes simply because I didn’t have some of the ingredients. If you try the whole thing, let me know!

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What did I do differently?

  • I sauteed the veggies like it said. But then I just sauteed the chicken too. I didn’t have egg whites or cornstarch, and this worked out great.
  • For the sauce, they have you combining cornstarch, ketchup, water, cider vinegar, brown sugar, and soy sauce. Again, I didn’t have cornstarch, and I also didn’t have cider vinegar. I did have white wine vinegar. So, like the rebellious cook I am, I just used what I had and eyeballed the amounts I put in, no measuring. I tasted it, amended, tasted again, and called it good. I will say that it would probably be better with cider vinegar, but sometimes you have to work with what you have!
  • I also cooked some brown rice, which made a delicious accompaniment!

Recipe #2 – Chicken Quinoa Bowls!

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This one, again, I followed a recipe from Cooking Light, but made changes based on what I had in my pantry.

What did I do differently here?

  • I followed it pretty much until the end. I didn’t have Marsala wine or shallots, so I sauteed the chicken, added onions (chopped finely), thyme, and garlic powder, and then called it good.

One of the things I love about cooking is that you get to make it how you like it. Sometimes that means following the recipe to the “T;” sometimes that means branching out…. either because of necessity or out of curiosity. I will always make my family’s Christmas cookies the same way, but I’m game to experiment with other things. And for certain recipes, following them with rigidity only makes cooking unpleasant. Don’t have a shallot? Use an onion. Don’t have an onion? Onion powder then. Cooking, as with a lot of things, is best approached as a flexible goal – you have a thing you want to create and the map to get there, but you might encounter some roadblocks. The real question is: what are you going to do with those roadblocks?

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