This week, T coined me the 'Macaroni Maestro'. He thinks I should write an entire cookbook on ways to improve upon the standard box of mac & cheese. While I will admit that the creamy white cheddar shells with chopped basil and diced fresh tomatoes made for quite a delectable little dish alongside our garden-fresh salad for dinner one night, I hardly consider it a truly original recipe since the majority of it came from a box of Annie's Mac & Cheese (a yummy 'all natural' alternative to the old standby Kraft by the way). However, in a pinch, it does make for an excellent alternative to homemade. Speaking of homemade...doesn't this Asian chicken stir-fry with snap peas look yummy?
When we moved, along with us came a bottle of sake. SAKE! And maybe a cute little sake carafe and glasses to go with. Therefore, the inspiration for this dish came from the need for some Asian flavors in our weekly routine. Everyone knows that sake goes best with Asian cuisine...or at least now you do! Also, I should probably mention the wonderful CSA box we had for week two.
CSA WEEK TWO: the haul
Step One: After gathering the ingredients, start the rice. Particularly if you are making brown rice, know that it takes longer than white rice. Get it started then chop up the veggies. Warm 1 Tbsp sesame oil in a large skillet then saute veggies for about 5 minutes until tender.
Step Two: Meanwhile, put together the marinade. Add the chicken and refrigerate for at least 15 minutes to allow the flavors to meld together. NOTE: Notice I accidentally added the red bell pepper to the marinade. You should add it to the veggies instead. If you do like I did, never fear, it will still work out. Once the veggies are tender, remove to a foil covered bowl. Add the chicken (strained from marinade) to the skillet, cooking about 2 minutes per side.
Step Three: Add the veggies and remainder of the marinade back to the skillet and continue cooking 8-10 minutes, or until tender and cooked through. Serve over rice.
|Recipe slightly adapted from All Recipes|
ASIAN CHICKEN STIR-FRY WITH SNAP PEAS | Yield: 6 servings | Total Time: 45 min.
2 C rice (white, brown, whatever you like)
4 C water
2/3 C lite soy sauce
1/4 C brown sugar
1 Tbsp cornstarch
1 Tbsp minced fresh ginger
1 Tbsp minced fresh garlic
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
3 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves, thinly sliced
2 Tbsp sesame oil, divided
1 red bell pepper, cut into matchsticks
1 (8 oz) can sliced water chestnuts, drained
2 C snap peas
1 C sliced carrots
1 onion, cut into large chunks
Bring rice and water to a boil in a saucepan over high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until the liquid has absorbed and rice is tender. NOTE: Times will vary depending on type of rice you use - be sure to check your package - generally speaking, somewhere between 20-50 minutes.
In a medium bowl, combine cornstarch, soy sauce, brown sugar; stir until smooth. Mix ginger, garlic, and red pepper flakes into sauce; coat chicken with marinade and refrigerate for at least 15 minutes.
Heat 1 Tbsp sesame oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add bell pepper, water chestnuts, snap peas, carrots, and onion stirring until tender, about 5 minutes. Remove vegetables from the skillet to a foil covered bowl and keep warm.
Heat remaining Tbsp sesame oil in skillet. Remove chicken from marinade (use a slotted spoon), reserving liquid. Add chicken to skillet and cook about 2 minutes per side until slightly pink inside. Return vegetables and reserved marinade to skillet. Bring to a boil; cook and stir until chicken is no long pink, about 5-7 minutes. Serve over rice...and with Sake if you feel like it!