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Multigrain Pilaf with Sunflower Seeds


Multigrain Pilaf with Sunflower Seeds is a great side to have for the holidays! Doesn't take up any oven space!

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of The International Housewares Association for IZEA. All opinions are 100% mine.

Multigrain Pilaf with Sunflower Seeds is a great side dish for your holiday table.  High fiber grains with leeks and sunflower seeds makes a great alternative to stuffing.

  Multigrain Pilaf with Sunflower Seeds is a great side to have for the holidays!  Doesn't take up any oven space!

I can not believe that Thanksgiving is right around the corner.  This weekend we had my son’s Lego Robotics competition.  They did great.  It was so fun to see all of their hard work pay off.  For 4th graders, who have never done this before, they came a really long way over the last two months.  It will be fun to see what happens next year.  So now that life is calming down a little bit, it is time to start thinking about the holidays.  Planning a menu, getting the decorations together, and making sure the day will be great.

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Peanut Chicken with Rice


Peanut Chicken with Rice - quick and easy dinner for any night of the week

Peanut Chicken with Rice - quick and easy dinner for any night of the week

This week is supposed to finally start cooling down here in Colorado.  Most of September was in the mid to upper 80’s around here.  We did have a few days where it got pretty chilly, but the last couple weeks we have had to turn our air conditioner back on.  I have to admit, I am ready for the cooler weather.  I want to make soup and fresh bread, and not have to sweat while I am eating it :)  And somehow is just feels a little wrong to be breaking out the pumpkin when it is 80 degrees.  I do not know how you warm weather year round people do it!  I love my seasons.

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Mexican Rice (Healthy)


Mexican Rice | @dinnersdishesdessert

We are on the 2nd day of 2013, which means eating healthy, right?  Did you make a resolution to eat better, or lose weight, or exercise more?  I am not big on resolutions, so I didn’t really make any.  I do need to get back on track with eating, but that is always the case after a holiday, no matter what time of year it is.  I also need to get back to exercising.  I hurt my foot on Thanksgiving, and haven’t been able to do much of anything since.  I am hoping I can do some walking, and work back up to running in January.

I am here to help you with those resolutions.  Mexican is one of my favorite types of food, and it can be notoriously bad for you.  But this rice isn’t!  I got it, probably 6 or 7 years ago from a low calorie magazine.  I can not remember where it came from, I have just memorized it and have been making it since.  I honestly can not believe it has taken so long to share it with you.

This rice is full of avocados, which might seem a little strange for rice, but trust me on this one.  I have served this rice to countless people, and everyone raves about it.  I have had to give out this recipes more times than I can remember over the years.  So, just because you are trying to eat better don’t eliminate Mexican from your diet!

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Caribbean Rice


caribbean rice

caribbean rice

A couple of weeks ago we had our last cooking club of the year.  Cooking club goes with the school schedule, so we take a break over the summer.  This month the theme was Island food.  Everything everyone brought was incredible, I can’t wait to try a couple of the recipes and share them with you.

I brought this Caribbean Rice, as well as a drink I will share with you soon.  Now, I am not sure this rice is authentic in any way.  It just has flavors I think of when I think of tropical islands.  Coconut, pineapple, and lime all say tropical to me.  This rice was a huge hit.  It is sweet because of the coconut milk, but not overly sweet that you can’t have it for dinner.   Unfortunately my family won’t go for fruit in their rice, so it will be awhile before I get to have this again.

This rice didn’t reheat the best.  Admittedly I am not the best with leftovers, so it could have just been me.  I would scale back a little if I was making it for less than 4 or 5 people.  It is super easy to make though, so it works great for a weeknight meal.  A nice little island escape in the middle of the week sounds perfect right now!

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Avgolemono Soup


Happy Friday!  Are you ready for the weekend?  We don’t have much going on, but I am excited for it to get here!  Did you miss my giveaway yesterday?  You want to check it out, it is a pretty cool program to make your own cookbook, invitations, scrapbook, postcard etc.  Trust me, it is easy and fun to play with :)

Also today, over at Steph’s Bite by Bite, Steph has a bake sale going on.  She is raising money for Team in Training to support the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.  Go check out my Peanut Butter Bars that are up for bidding on.

It is the beginning of March, but most areas of the country are still cold.  So today, I am bringing you a yummy, comforting soup.  This is a popular chicken and rice soup in Greece.  The recipe is from Cooking Light, and has only 269 calories per serving!  It is very lemony, I cut down a little when I made it, and I thought it was the perfect amount.  Add a small salad and you have a very healthy, well balanced meal.  And you could even afford some bread!  Or maybe Dessert!

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Sour Cream Enchiladas


It is Secret Recipe Club time again!  It seems like forever since I have participated!  I am excited to be back to the fun this month.

This month I was assigned Edesia’s Notebook.  Lesa is a stay at home mom to 2 little girls.  She has a very extensive list of yummy looking recipes on her site.  I had a hard time picking what to make!  Lemon Pepper Pappardelle with Roasted Garlic Sauce was very high on my list!  Unfortunately we don’t have a Trader Joe’s, and I couldn’t find the right pasta :(  I am still on the hunt though, and will make it soon!

We love Mexican food, and Lesa has plenty of Mexican food on her blog.  I finally decided on Sour Cream Chicken Enchiladas, and made her Guacamole Rice to go with it.  The enchiladas were creamy and delicious!  The rice wasn’t our favorite, but I don’t think that is any fault of the recipe.  My husband is not a fan of cilantro.  I cut back on the amount, but it was still a lot for him.  I like avocado with rice though, so I think leaving the cilantro out would be good for us!

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THE Rice


THE Rice - this rice is a super easy side dish the whole family will love. Mushrooms and french onion soup give the rice lots of great flavor.
THE Rice – this rice is a super easy side dish the whole family will love.  Mushrooms and french onion soup give the rice lots of great flavor.

THE Rice - this rice is a super easy side dish the whole family will love.  Mushrooms and french onion soup give the rice lots of great flavor.

Photos for The Rice were updated 12/12/14

We have accepted an offer for our house!  YEAH!!!  Our house was on the market for 41 days, which seems like a lifetime to me, but the realtor keeps telling me it is super fast.  The average days on market for our price range is 103, so I guess she is right.  I am just so excited to be able to have an end date, and be able to move on with the next stage of our lives.

Now…. The Food!

The Rice - a family recipe that is a great side dish for the whole family.

I am struggling with what to call this post.  This rice doesn’t really have a name.  We just call it “The Rice”.  It is a recipe my husband grew up with.  It is super simple, but so good.  It is fancy enough that we have made this many times while entertaining, or even with small holiday meals.  But we also make it during the week too.  Everyone loves it, and are amazed when they see the recipe.  Aside from the baking time, it is super quick and easy to throw together.  The first time I had this rice was when I was 15.  My husband (then boyfriend) was helping me with math homework (he was a much smarter Senior boy).  He was supposed to be making us frozen pizza for dinner.  But instead he made Chicken and this Rice!  I was blown away, and it was so good!  Had to keep him around after that :)

The Rice {Dinners, Dishes, and Desserts}

 

THE Rice
 
Serves: 6
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
 
THE Rice - this rice is a super easy side dish the whole family will love. Mushrooms and french onion soup give the rice lots of great flavor.
Ingredients
  • 2 cups Minute Rice
  • ¼ cup butter (1/2 stick)
  • 1 can Condensed French Onion Soup
  • 1 small can Mushroom (you can saute fresh ones if you have them)
  • 1 small can of Water (I use the mushroom can)
Instructions
  1. Preheat Oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Melt butter in a pan. Add the rice. Cook the rice until lightly toasted, stirring frequently.
  3. Place rice into a casserole dish that has a cover. Pour in soup, mushrooms and water. Mix together. Cover and bake for about 45 minutes, or until all liquid is absorbed.

 

Check out these other Rice Recipes

Ginger Rice from Just One Cookbook
Spanish Rice from Simply Recipes
Cilantro Lime Brown Rice from Cookin’ Canuck
Caribbean Rice from Dinners, Dishes, and Desserts
Garliky Rice from Dinners, Dishes, and Desserts

Citrus Garlic Chicken with Coconut Lime Rice


Coconut Oil is all the rage lately.  So many people have tried it, and are posting great looking recipes with it.  I must admit, I am not a fan of coconut.  But this oil has peaked my curiosity.  So when Jen from Kelapo contacted me, I was super excited to see what all the hype was about.  When it arrive the first thing I had to do was smell it.  It smelled exactly like what I thought it would…Coconut Heaven!  I could just sit with that jar next to me all day, taking sniffs every minute or so.  It is like vacation in a jar!

I have tried a couple things with it, but this rice was so good.  The chicken would have been really good as well, but it needed more citrus.  I will post the recipe as I made it.  But I think if you used the juice of the fruit just before serving, it would brighten it up and give it great flavor.  Or even marinate the chicken in some citrus and coconut oil before cooking.  This is a great dinner for fall or winter, when you are wishing you were on a tropical vacation!

The great people at Kelapo have something for you as well!  They are offering you 20% off your order.  Use the coupon code “Dinners20” at Kelapo to take advantage of this offer.  It is case sensitive, so make sure to enter it correctly.  The offer expires 10/21/11.   Be sure to visit them on Facebook or at their Blog for other great recipes! 

Coconut Lime Rice
Printable Recipe

1 cup Coconut Milk
1 cup Chicken Stock
1 Tbls Coconut Oil
1 cup Long Grain Rice
1 lime, lested and juiced

Heat Coconut Oil in the bottom of a pan.  Stir in rice to coat.  Add Chicken Stock and Coconut Milk.  Bring to a boil, then cover and reduce heat to low.  Cook for about 20 minutes, or until all liquid is absorbed.  Stir in lime zest and juice before serving. 

Citrus Garlic Chicken
Printable Recipe

1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts
Salt and Pepper
1 Tbls Garlic, minced
1 Tbls Ginger, minced
1 Lime zested
1 Lemon zested
1 Cup Chicken Stock
3 Tbls Coconut Oil

Heat 2 Tbls Coconut Oil in a skillet over med – high heat.  Season both sides of chicken with salt and pepper.  Add chicken to the pan, and brown on both sides.  Remove from pan (it will not be cooked through). 

Add the garlic and ginger to the pan.  Cook for a minute or until soft.  Add in chicken stock.  Return chicken to the pan.  Cover and simmer over low heat until the chicken is cooked through. Remove chicken from the pan.  Stir in the zest and 1 Tbls of coconut oil.  Pour over chicken.  Enjoy!

**I received a jar of Coconut Oil from Kelapo.  The opinions are completely my own. 

Kung Pao Chicken


I am glad to be writing about something that isn’t dessert for once!  Seems like a long time since I posted an actual meal.  I was struggling with what to make for dinner last night.  I took some chicken out of the freezer earlier in the day, but didn’t really know what I was going to do with it.  Then I started craving something Asian in nature.  I found a couple of really yummy looking recipes like this Asian Chicken recipe or this Honey Ginger Chicken, but both needed a long time to marinate.  And since my chicken was still frozen at noon, those didn’t seem like possibilities.  Though, when I am planning ahead more I will try those for sure!  I finally found a Kung Pao Chicken recipe that looked like with a few modifications could be a winner.  It fit what I was looking for…..chicken, Asian flavors, saucy, serve over rice!  

Kung Pao Chicken
Adapated from Allrecipes
Printable recipe

1 pound boneless, skinless, chicken breasts
5 Tbls white wine
5 Tbls soy sauce
2 Tbls sesame oil
1 Tbls cornstarch, dissolved in water
1 Tbls hot chili paste
3 tsp rice vinegar
6 tsp brown sugar
5 green onions, chopped
1 Tbls chopped garlic
1 small can waterchestnuts
2 cups veggies (mushrooms, green peppers, carrots, zucchini etc.)
Chopped peanuts

 First you want to make the marinade.  I like to use a gallon size ziploc bag, because I throw it away when it is done, and there are no dirty dishes (aside from the measuring spoons).  Combine 2 Tbls wine, 2 Tbls soy sauce, 1 Tbls oil, and 1 Tbls cornstarch mixture.  Add in the chicken, that is cut into chunks.  Toss to coat, and marinate in fridge for at least 30 minutes.  I don’t drink white wine, but I do buy those little 4 packs that they sell in the store now.  So when a recipe calls for it, I can open this tiny bottle, and not have a big investment in 1 ingredient. 

While that is marinating you can make the sauce. Combine 3 Tbls wine, 3 Tbls soy sauce, 1 Tbls oil, chili paste, vinegar and sugar.  Set aside.  Next, chop your veggies.  You can really use whatever your family likes.  I had zucchini in the fridge that needed to get used.  So I used that and mushrooms for us.  But you could use broccoli, bell peppers, carrots….really whatever you like!

Now you are ready to cook.  I think the key with making anything Asian is to have everything ready before you turn on the pan.  You want to have the sauce made, the veggies chopped, everything.  Even down to the table set, and drinks ready.  Asian food tends to cook on a high heat and be done quickly, and most of that time is hands on.  So you don’t want to be running around the kitchen trying to do other things at the same time.  
In a large skillet saute the chicken until the meat is cooked through.  Remove it from the pan.  Then add in the veggies, and cook them until tender.  Remove them from the pan.  Finally reduce the heat, and add the garlic, green onions, and water chestnuts.  Saute them for a couple minutes, and pour in the sauce.  Heat sauce slowly until it is aromatic (smells good).  Add the chicken and veggies back into the pan.  Cook for a couple more minutes to heat everything back up.  The sauce should start to thicken slightly.  If you like a thicker sauce you can add in a little more cornstarch that is dissolved in water.  Serve over rice, and top with chopped peanuts for some crunch.  Cashews would be good too, if you don’t have peanuts.