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Saturday, March 2, 2013

Don't know what is possessing me?

I randomly cooked a good dinner, randomly took pictures of it and randomly said "I think I'll post this on my blog!" Yeah I don't know what has become of me.  I know I have been in the Bermuda Triangle of Pregnancy for the last 6 months.  And I would like to believe that these surges of energy will be more regular now but honestly, I am not making any promises...

So without further excuses, explanations or ado dinner tonight was Chinese at home! My Mom made this for us all last fall and I have been dying to make it again since then.
Orange Chinese Chicken with Stir Fried Veges
1/2 bag baby carrots, cut in half
3 large colored peppers, cut into 1/2-inch chunks (I always go for the red/orange/yellow trio)
1 Tbsp minced garlic
4 boneless skinless chicken breast halves (about 2 pounds) - I think next time I would use boneless skinless thighs
2 tsp. ground ginger or fresh minced ginger
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
8 ounces frozen orange juice concentrate
1 cans Mandarin orange segments, drained
2 green onions, chopped (whites and greens)
2 cups hot cooked rice
1/4 cup shredded coconut
1/2 tsp garlic salt
Stir fry veges of your choice (I did a can of water chestnuts, 1/2 bag of frozen broccoli, mushroom, onion mix)
Dash of Lawry's Sesame Ginger Marinade

Put carrots, bell peppers, garlic, then the chicken, ginger, salt, pepper and frozen orange juice in crock pot. Cover and cook on LOW 4 to 6 hours. After 6 hrs, while I was working on the other dishes I started poking in the crock pot with a wooden spoon and the chicken broke apart and became shredded which really helped soak up some of the juices.  Then to further thicken it I also made a cornstarch slurry (4 Tbsp. water + 2 Tbsp. cornstarch; mix until cornstarch is completely dissolved. Mix into sauce and let sit for a minute).
NOTE: I think this would make a great freezer meal too because you can throw everything in a Ziploc in the freezer and then thaw and throw in the crock to cook. 

I also made stir fried veges to go with it. 

As they were finishing sauteing in the pan I added a few Tbsps Lawry's Sesame Ginger.  If you are opposed to using a bottled marinade you could just season with garlic, dry ginger and a dash of soy sauce.

Coconut Mandarin Rice

Words cannot express how much I love the flavor of coconut added to rice.  It takes it to another dimension! Please try it if you don't have feelings strongly opposed to coconut! Basically I made a batch of rice, added shredded coconut, can of drained mandarin oranges and a chopped green onion with a dash of garlic salt.  It. Was. So. YUMMY!!!!

So to plate it all up I started with the rice...
Added the veges...

Then a scoop of the orange chicken mixture.  And topped it off with a small handful of cashews...

I did serve it with store bought egg rolls with sweet and sour dipping sauce.  Sorry not everything is homemade.  Hey this meal AND blog is kind of big deal for me these days so you can't set your expectations too high!

So that's it.  If you are in the mood for a little home cooked "takeout" this meal was super easy, yummy, and flavorful.  The flavors of the coconut, oranges and cashews had my kids diving right in and of course it was full of veges "hidden" in all that goodness.  Although my oldest is still super skeptical of water chestnuts, haha! I don't know why?!  Hope you enjoy, and I hope you will hear from me again soon....Bon Appetite!