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Thursday, February 28, 2013

Rough Day

I had a rough day in the kitchen!

I started my day with a second attempt to make lemon poppy seed pancakes turn out. They did not. Where the first batch had been far too thin, the second batch was far too thick. And after I thinned the batter out, it did not want to hold together. The pancake product turned out very dry and crumbly and generally not flavorful. They would have been practically inedible if I hadn't topped them with my tasty blueberry syrup. I'll eventually share that because it is totally worth it, but not today.

Lunch was leftover Buffalo Chicken Pizza thank goodness. Perfect even as leftovers!

I arrived home at supper time after a few late afternoon errands. Peanut had his trip out and enjoyed his supper within ten minutes of my arrival. I, on the other hand, was not prepared to commit to dinner yet. I enjoyed an apple, which would tide me over until I was motivated to tackle dinner.

I settled on a chicken wild rice casserole (which was not what was listed on my menu for tonight). I had purchased a package of wild rice while out on errands. I haven't had wild rice since before the Whole 30, so I was excited to use it right away. But by the time I was motivated to start dinner, it was already 7pm and the wild rice would take an hour to cook. I looked up a microwave time online and followed the directions.

As I prepared the rest of the ingredients, the rice cooked and cooked away.... all the liquid. I was completely deflated to find the rice crispy and bone dry at the end of the cooking time. And smelly. I had been wondering where that burning smell was coming from. I had already prepared the other ingredients, so I improvised by cooking up a pot of quinoa pasta instead. And the flavors of this are so delicious, I know the recipe is worth sharing whether you use rice or pasta.

[Hopefully I will get a picture to share next time I prepare this.]

Cheesy Chicken Casserole

2 tsp olive oil
4 chicken tenderloins
salt and pepper
2 stalks celery, diced
2 carrots, peeled and diced
1/2 Tbsp minced garlic
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp black pepper
1/8 tsp garlic powder
8oz prepared wild rice (or prepared gluten free pasta!)
6 Tbsp cheddar cheese, shredded

CHEESE SAUCE
1 Tbsp butter
1 Tbsp arrowroot
salt and pepper
1/2C chicken broth (gluten free)
1/2C cheddar cheese, shredded

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2. Heat olive oil in skillet over medium heat and cook chicken until browned and no traces of pink remain. Salt and pepper to taste. Cool and chop, then set aside.

3. Saute celery, carrots, and garlic in skillet until tender. Add salt, pepper, and garlic powder.

4. Meanwhile, in a medium sauce pan, melt butter. Stir in arrowroot and salt and pepper to taste until a paste is formed.

5. Slowly whisk in chicken broth and heat to boiling. Remove from heat and stir in cheese to melt.

6. When vegetables are tender, add chopped chicken, rice (or pasta) to skillet and top with cheese sauce. Stir to combine.

7. Pour casserole into a oven safe dish and top with shredded cheddar cheese.

8. Bake for 25 minutes or until cheese is golden.

I wish you the best of luck with your rice cooking. My hair may smell like burned rice, but my belly is full from my tasty dinner. And luckily I had enough wine to make me forget about the kitchen disasters of the day.


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