Monday, August 6, 2012

Quinoa Chicken Enchilada Bake

It's hot here.

Okay, it's warm.

Okay, it's a tad uncomfortable.

Okay, I'm a wuss.  Still, it's too warm to be baking casseroles.  And yet, that's what I did tonight.  Yes, I'm crazy.  The guys in white coats will be here soon.

Also, I shouldn't give myself free reign in the produce department.  It's really not a good idea.  You know why?  I come home with bags full of kale, zucchini, broccoli, carrots, onions, celery, mangoes, apples, bananas, blueberries, strawberries, and a papaya.  All in one trip.  All for one person.  That's a lot for one person.

I have similar problems in the ice cream department.  But we won't talk about that.

So, tonight I tried something new.  I tried making a my own recipe.  In an attempt to use up some of the produce in my fridge, I decided to combine various items in my pantry into a casserole.  I present to you:

Quinoa Chicken Enchilada Bake

Serves: 4-5   Prep Time: 30min  Bake Time: 25-30min

 - 1c quinoa
 - 2c chicken broth
 - 2 chicken breasts
 - 2/3T vegetable oil
 - 1c zucchini
 - 1c broccoli
 - 1c carrots
 - 1/2 of a yellow onion
 - 2 green onions
 - 1-2c cheese
 - 2c red enchilada sauce


1. Cook quinoa according to instructions on bag.  I cooked mine in leftover chicken broth.

 2. Prepare enchilada sauce.  I followed this recipe from Budget Bytes, but I'm sure the canned sauces will work just fine.

3. Chop up vegis.  The measurements are my best guess at how much there was.  It was half an onion, half a zucchini, a couple large handfuls of broccoli, some carrots, and two green onions.

4.  Heat 1 teaspoon of vegetable oil in a pan/skillet/frying vessel on the stove and season raw chicken with salt and chili powder.

5. Cook the chicken until no longer pink and set aside.

6. Heat the other teaspoon of vegetable oil and then saute the yellow onion, carrots, broccoli, and zucchini until soft.

7. Preheat the oven to 350F.  Then take the casserole dish your Aunt Karen gave to you and start layering the various elements.

If you don't have an Aunt Karen, you might have trouble with this step.

Just kidding.  Any casserole dish will do.

Start with the cooked quinoa. . .

Then add a few pinches of shredded cheese. . .

Then layer in the cooked vegetables. . .

And then add the chicken. . .

Drizzle the enchilada sauce over the top. . .

And finally top it off with more cheese. . .

And green onions.

8. Bake at 350F for 25-30 minutes, until bubbly.  This may be longer or shorter, depending on your dish.  My dish is about 4 inches deep, so it took a bit longer to cook through.

9.  Let cool for 5 minutes, then plate your food.  Then eat.  

The food, not the plate.  Just wanted to make that clear.

The only thing I would differently on this would be to layer in some enchilada sauce in the middle.  The flavors in the sauce seep into the quinoa and the chicken and the vegetables, giving it all a nice, healthy Mexican-tasting dish.


Sunday, July 29, 2012

Check Up

So, this is a sad little blog.  Things happen and I forget to post, or I travel and I forget to post, or I remember to post but forget what I want to comment about.  Either way, this is being neglected and forgotten, much like the poinsettia I had last year (I'm really not very good with plants).

How about a 2012 Goals check in?  Okay, here we go:

1. Regular Exercise:  This one is an ongoing project.  A few months back, I bought a Fitbit pedometer.  It sets daily goals of 10000 steps, 10 flights of stairs, and 5 miles.  Most days I can reach these goals.  It's been a good way of motivating myself to live a more active lifestyle altogether.

2. Healthy Eats:  This is a daily struggle, but I feel that I eat right a majority of the time.  Sweets are still a problem, and I've been off the wagon for a few weeks, but I'm getting better.  A nice plus of the Fitbit is that it also estimates calories burned and syncs automatically with MyFitnessPal, so I can better estimate my calories in versus calories out.

3. Hot Bridesmaid:  Check!  The wedding was last weekend, and I weighed in at 16lbs lost.  Feeling much better my appearance, and my energy level is much higher these days.

4. Probability Theory: This is still on the list, but it hasn't been touched yet.

5. Read 20 books: I've read 13 books so far this year, which puts me a little ahead of the goal.  You can follow my progress and reading on GoodReads.

6. Blogging: This one still needs work.  But I'm making an effort (today at least).

Thursday, May 24, 2012

That Time of Year

I was hissed at by a duck today.

True story.

On my walk to the gym, I walked past a sitting duck.  It raised its head and "HISSSSSSSSSSSSSSS"-ed at me.  Then three little yellow heads popped up from under the duck's folded wings.

I'll admit.  I was a little intimidated.  And then I started laughing.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Best Feature

Me: "What?  We like the mints."

J: <shakes head and rolls eyes>

Me: "Don't give me that look!"

J: "That's not a look.  It's an action."

Me: <puts mint in mouth> "Smart ass."

J: "Hey, at least part of me is.  And it's my BEST FEATURE!"

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Goals, Part 2

How about a little update on these goals?  You got it!

1. Regular exercise: check!  Even the snow couldn't stop me today!  I've been alternating between running and lifting, and I've been sore for several days straight.  It feels good.  And it's almost into a routine.  Gonna make getting up in the mornings easier.

2. Healthy eating: check!  I've made one crockpot recipe (Southwest Soup) and have two lined up for the next week.

3. Be a hot bridesmaid: In Progress (See 1 and 2).  We're dress shopping tomorrow and the wedding is 6 months away.  I've also started tracking my eating habits on My Fitness Pal, which has been surprisingly rewarding (for the two days I've done it).

4. Review Probability Theory: Uh.... I'll get to this one.

5. Read 20 books: one book down.  I read Lizzie Siddal: The Tragedy of a Pre-Raphaelite Supermodel by Lucinda Hawksley (who taught my Pre-Raphaelites art history class in London).  It was a great read and I highly recommend it.  Currently trying to get through a backlog of magazines before starting my next book.

6. Blogging: this one needs work.
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