Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Meal In A Jiff

I was at it again in the kitchen. My better half calls me "the short order cook." I guess growing up in a family of six and learning how to cook from my mom and grandmothers, I am able to now spin a meal around modern style. My mom and grandmothers did not work outside the home so they seemingly had the resources to get a meal done without worrying about leaving the house with the stove on. Welcome to my life of quick, easy homemade and fresh tasting meals. It's my daily challenge not only to provide something nice for my family but to stay out of restaurants as much as possible.

At times I find myself coming home from work often staring at the refrigerator wondering what on earth do I whip up tonight. Occasionally I have it all sorted and planned out ahead of time via crockpot cooking or something a little less spontaneous. But then there are those days where my mind is elsewhere and what we eat for dinner has not been thought of that day.

Today was one of those days. I hadn't thought of it until I came home from work at 5 pm. When I opened the refrigerator I was pleasantly surprised to find leftover chicken breast, broccoli, mushrooms, and green peppers. I had plenty of pasta in the pantry with newly purchased tamari sauce. It popped into my head.

Chicken Lo Mein

And within 30 minutes I had chicken lo mein on the table. Very tasty. It was really quite easy and here is how I did it. Excuse the lack of measurements. I usually eyeball those.

Leftover chicken breast
One green pepper, chopped
A handful of mushrooms, sliced
Head of blanched broccoli (blanch in boiling water for 5 minutes only...drain and shock it in cold ice water to stop the cooking process)
Two beaten eggs
Tamari soy sauce
Peanut Oil
1/2 lb of angel hair pasta (or spaghetti)

Boil pot of water for the pasta. While water is boiling, heat a wok or large frying pan with peanut oil (enough to thickly coat the bottom of the pan). When pan is very hot, add eggs and scramble. After eggs are scrambled, add remaining ingredients except for the tamari. Stir the vegetables and chicken for approximately 5-10 minutes until the dish cooks and develops flavors. While that is cooking, add the pasta to the boiling water and cook until done. When pasta is done, drain and add to the stir fry. Incorporate the pasta and stir fry until fully combined. Sprinkle tamari sauce on the dish and stir in until there is a slightly brown color to the dish or when it suits your taste (usually about 5-6 shakes of the bottle).

You are now finished and have a really lovely dish that tastes even better than take out and much healthier for you.

Bon Appetit

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