Terre Pruitt's Blog

In the realm of health, wellness, fitness, and the like, or whatever inspires me.

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    Stretch: Thurs at 10:15 am

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Posts Tagged ‘chicken’

Mexican Chicken Salad

Posted by terrepruitt on September 11, 2017

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFitWe recently went through an extremely hot spell. This is the San Francisco Bay Area, so we are not really accustomed to having EXTREMELY hot weather. Many homes in this area don’t have air conditioning. Most often when we do have hot days, we get cooler nights so it makes the hot days somewhat bearable because the night air has cooled everything down. But with this last heat wave there was no reprieve from the heat of the day at all. So it was hot and it stayed hot for days. Record breaking temperatures were recorded all over. So the idea of making dinner was really unappealing. And the idea of using anything that created heat was just unthinkable. I was trying to come up with something we could eat that wouldn’t require heat at all. The only thing I could think of was Chicken Salad. Now this was all I could think of without me having to go to the store. But I thought that was kind of average because when I make chicken salad I use mayonnaise, pickles, and garlic salt. Not just that, but that is the basic idea. But I wanted a different flavor. I was thinking I could give it a Mexican flavor and we could put it on a tortilla with a little cheese and salsa on top. Had we had avocado and sour cream that would have gone on top, too, for my hubby. So here is what I came up with.

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Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFitMexican Chicken Salad

1 can of chicken
1 can of corn
1/4 cup of chopped white onion
1/4 cup of chopped red onion
1 teaspoon minced garlic
2 teaspoons garlic salt
1 teaspoon coriander
1 teaspoon cilantro
1 teaspoon cumin
Sprinkle of pepper
Half of a green bell pepper
– – – –
2 teaspoons white vinegar
2 teaspoons lime juice
Flour tortillas
Shredded cheese
Salsa

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFit(The dashes indicate ingredients that were good on their own. They didn’t even need the rest. But it was good all together.)

Chop the bell pepper. Mix the chicken, corn, onion, garlic, garlic salt, coriander, cilantro, cumin, pepper, bell pepper vinegar, and lime juice together. Let it chill for at least an hour, to let the flavors meld together a bit.

Then spoon the mixture onto a flour tortilla and top with shredded cheese and salsa. Roll it up to eat it like a burrito.

As I said, if you have avocado and/or sour cream you could put that on top.

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Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFitAs I mentioned, these ingredients are what I had. I did not go to the store so I used dried cilantro. When I make this in the future I am going to use fresh cilantro and I think that will make a big difference flavorwise. I was kind of flying by the seat of my pants because it was just too hot. Too hot to go to the store and too hot to create heat and cook.

I like this because it is chicken salad without mayonnaise. So this means we can have chicken salad twice as often because it won’t be the same ol’ same ol’ chicken salad.

This was even better two days later when the flavors REALLY had time to settle in. So you can make it a day or so before you want to eat it.

Do you like chicken salad? What do you put in your chicken salad?

Posted in "Recipes", Food | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

Boneless Pork Chops In The Crockpot

Posted by terrepruitt on October 15, 2013

If you have read any of my recipe posts you probably know I love leftovers.  It just makes a lot of sense to me to cook once and have some of the meal left over for a quick meal later on.  This is really a great help for people who are busy or who’s schedule does not allow for cooking every night.  This week I am going to be busy three nights in a row.  Two nights I am subbing Nia for Hot Hula and the third night I have Gentle Yoga.  So Monday I did some cooking.  Monday I actually prepared dinner that will be our dinner for a couple of nights, but I also prepared a lasagna.  I froze it and I will put in the oven before I go to class one night this week, so it will be done around the time I get home.  I will use time bake for that so we will see.  But last night we had Crockpot Balsamic Pork.

I modified a chicken recipe I had seen on Facebook.  First of all I used pork instead of chicken.  I love chicken and I have been “missing” it.  We haven’t had any for a while.  Then the people-getting-sick-from-chicken thing came up and I was happy we hadn’t purchased any.  Then I found some in our freezer hiding behind something and I was happy.  It was purchased way before the latest issue and we had eaten the other chicken from the batch so I was so glad to have found it.  So we had just had chicken and I didn’t feel comfortable buying any so I bought pork.  I know that I like pork and balsamic so I thought it would work.

I rarely use my crockpot.  Something about cooking meat for HOURS, just doesn’t sound good to me.  This recipe called for FOUR hours on high.  Well, I figured that pork would NOT need FOUR hours so I decided to try it for two and see how it looked.

The recipe also calls for dried basil, but for some reason I thought fresh would be better.  Not sure why and not sure that it was.

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Crock Pot Balsamic Pork

1 1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 heaping tsp salt
1/8 tsp pepper
2 heaping tsps dried minced onion
1/2 cup of fresh chopped basil
5 garlic cloves, pressed with garlic press
2 tblsp olive oil
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
7 thick cut boneless pork chops
chopped parsley for the top

Combine the first four ingredients in a small bowl, then spread over one side of pork, saving half for the other side.  Use half the basil piling a little on each piece.  Let the pork stand a bit.  Then flip the pork over and use the rest of the dry ingredients and basil to coat the pork.

Use the garlic and the oil to coat the pot of the crockpot.  Then place the pork inside.  Pour the vinegar over.

Set to high and cook for about two hours.

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Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia at the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Zumba, PiYo, Gentle YogaAn hour and 45 minutes later I turned my pot down to low so that I could keep preparing my salad for dinner and my lasagna for later.  I think I will cook it less next time.  I think turning it off at an hour and 45 minutes would have been better.  Although our pork was not overcooked, we just prefer it a little less cooked.

I know the thing that people think is so great about crockpots is you put it on and forget it.  Even though this is not hours and hours of “forgetting” it is still at least an hour and 45 minutes.  I would think it could be the four hours on low.

This was good.  My husband and I love garlic and that was a primary flavor . . . so I think if I want the balsamic to stand out more I will use less garlic.  If I had used dried basil – as the original recipe calls for – this would have been a super simple meal.  Adding the basil (washing and chopping) dropped it down to a simple meal.

It was good.  I can see me making this again.  And one day I will even try it with chicken.  Last night we had it with a spinach salad and my favorite Smashed Potatoes!  I did not take pictures of the finished product.  I was doing too many things at the time!

Do you use a slow cooker/crockpot?  What is your favorite thing to cook in the crockpot?  Does meat you cook in a crockpot come out well done?

Posted in "Recipes", Food | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

Stretch The Meat

Posted by terrepruitt on June 15, 2013

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia at the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, ZumbaI know that this would not work for every family.  This is another recipe using one piece of meat with beans as the source of protein.  I know that people have their own ideas about what makes up a dinner.  Some people have to have meat.  And not just a little meat, but a full serving or more otherwise to them, it is just not dinner.  I understand that people are different.  If that is you or someone in your family then this will not work for you.  But as long as I don’t do it three nights in a row, my husband is ok with it.  What I often do is cook three pieces of meat.  The first night we each have a piece of meat.  Then the next night I stretch the remaining piece into a meal for two.  Sometimes . . . . depends on what I am cooking in turns into a meal for four.  I have mentioned this before in some of my other post so I like to share “recipe” ideas.  Even though it is really easy to throw something together, sometimes it is nice to have someone else do the thinking for you.  With everything else that has to be done, if you can just look at something and have it all figured out — YAY!

So this recipe is pretty much like the one in Dinner Desperation.  See?  It works when you are “desperate”.

Mushrooms, Kale, Beans, Chicken, and Rice

—2 tablespoon olive oil
—1/2 of an onion, chopped
—1 lb mushrooms, chopped or sliced
—2 cups cooked rice (out of the fridge, so leftover)
—2 tablespoons of butter
—one LARGE chicken breast, cooked and chopped
—1 15 1/2-ounce can garbanzo beans/chickpeas, drained and rinsed
—2 teaspoons granulated garlic
—1 bunch of kale, chopped
—salt
—Garlic Salt, to taste
—Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Heat the olive oil and the chopped onion.  Add the mushrooms.  Cook until almost done.  (Done to YOUR tastes)  Add a little salt.  (Just a little because you need to “save” your salt “layer” for the kale.)  Add the rice breaking it up and letting it get soft.  Stirring it and allowing it to cook.  Use the butter to help the rice get moist (might need to use a bit of liquid too).  When the rice is soft, add the chopped chicken.  Let it cook for a little bit.  Then add the can of garbanzo beans.  Sprinkle half of the garlic over mixture.  Then add the kale.  Sprinkle the rest of the garlic over the kale.  And salt.  Then stir and cook.  Then add more salt and garlic if you want, and pepper.

With this mixture the mushrooms need to cook.  Some people don’t like their mushrooms really cooked, I do.  So I let them cook pretty much all the way as if I were going to just eat them.  When in the other recipe I don’t cook the asparagus THAT much because I like it less cooked.  So I add the rice sooner.  But in THIS recipe I wait until the mushrooms are done.   Also remember, if you are using freshly cooked rice then it won’t take as long to cook/heat up.  Also the chicken I used had been seasoned when cooked so that is something to keep in mind when you are flavoring your dish.

Kale is really a great green, however, I think it is really bitter.  So I use the salt to tame the bitter.  That is why I “save” the salting of the dish for after the kale is added.  Typically I would salt the mushrooms, but with kale, I wait for the kale.  So the salt goes directly on the kale.

Of course, this is just how I do it.  This is an explanation of the order I like it in.  You might come up with your own.  Oh, maybe you like your kale to be REALLY cooked, so you might want to add it with or after the mushrooms?  I like mine just wilted so it goes last.

So what do you think?  Mushrooms and kale, anyone?

Posted in "Recipes", Food | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Dinner Desperation

Posted by terrepruitt on March 2, 2013

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia at the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, ZumbaFor those of you that cook dinner every night you might understand what I am about to say, “Cooking dinner is difficult.”  Ok, more accurately coming up with ideas of what to cook for dinner is difficult.  I actually have it very easy because my husband would be fine eating the same thing all week then switching to something else the next week.  As long as it was not a vegetarian dish three days in a row.  But I am not happy with that.  As you know if you have read any of my posts about food, I love left overs because they keep me from having to cook or at least keep me from having to start from scratch.  The other night I was really at a loss as to what to prepare for dinner.  It was a Wednesday so I really should have been thinking in terms of cooking for Wednesday so that I could have enough left over for Thursday when I have a late Nia class.  But I couldn’t think “two nights” I just wanted to get through the one night and use the portion of a piece of chicken I had from the night before.  I came up with something that I didn’t even think about being enough for leftovers but it was.  It carried us through two nights.  Asparagus, beans, rice, and chicken.

Another thing you might know about me if you have a read a few of my posts, I LOVE asparagus.  I mean, love, love, love, love.  Once I was asked what food I would want to have given to me free every day and I said asparagus.  But even though I love it, I won’t buy it when it is $8.99 a pound.  I don’t even like to buy it when it is $4.99 a pound.  I might buy it when it is $2.99 a pound, but I like the $1.99 range.  But knowing how much I love it my hubby bought me some recently.  I didn’t ask how much it was.  I just had five pounds of asparagus to eat.  🙂

I often use three servings of meat to make four servings of dinner.  Usually my husband has a serving and I have a good portion of one.  The next night I will use the third serving along with my smaller portion to make another meal.  Well on this night I was using just my left over portion because we had only cooked two servings the night before.  So to me it would be a vegetarian-ish dish.  As it would have way more veggies than meat.

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia at the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, ZumbaSo here is my “recipe”

Asparagus, beans, rice, and chicken

—1 tablespoon olive oil
—1/2 of an onion, chopped
—asparagus (2.25 pounds) chopped
—2 teaspoons minced garlic
—1 3/4 cup cooked rice
—2 tablespoons of butter
—3/4 teaspoon ground cumin
—1 15 1/2-ounce can garbanzo beans/chickpeas, drained and rinsed
—3/4th of a LARGE chicken breast, cooked and chopped
—Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
—Garlic Salt, to taste

Heat the olive oil and the chopped onion.  Add the asparagus.  Cook only slightly (because the rice takes a while to heat up).  Sprinkle garlic over asparagus.  Stirring it and allowing it to cook.  Add the rice breaking it up and letting it get soft.  Use the butter to help the rice get moist (might need to use a bit of liquid too).  And the cumin.  When the rice is soft, add the can of garbanzo beans.  Then add the chopped up chicken.  Add pepper and garlic salt to taste.

Since asparagus doesn’t take that long to cook and everything else is ok to eat as is, it is really the rice that needs the most amount of time.  If you are using freshly cooked rice then this would take minutes.  As a note the chicken I used had been seasoned when cooked the night before so that is something to keep in mind when flavoring your dish.

For me it is the beans and the cumin that is “new”.  I have done dishes like this before using other meat.  I think this would also be good with left over pork.

I was thinking of the Red Beans and Rice recipe when I did this, using the beans and the cumin.

We liked it.  What do you think?  Sound easy?  Sound like something you would like?

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Poboylivinrich Rainbow-Stuffed Chicken

Posted by terrepruitt on November 8, 2012

This week I have been in training all week.  Nia calls its trainings “intensives”.  I have been in one all week for Blue Belt.  It is about 40 hours of a lot of information.  So I am sharing something about a recipe I have made and love.  As you may know, I only like to eat meat that has been marinated.  I figured out that I don’t really like the taste of meat.  So I like it to have soaked in something a long time to give it a different flavor.  I’ve shared with you the fact that we now freeze our meat in the marinade.  A couple of weeks back we took a weekend trip to Costco, so we spent a couple of hours after our shopping trip making marinade bags and trimming the meat and putting it in its separate bags.  Originally we had a problem with the marinated meat in a bag because we could not tell if it is whole steaks or cut up steak.  We have taken meat out expecting one thing only to get the other, so I finally learned to label the bags.  I can tell the beef from the pork from the chicken at least.  The reason I am explaining about marinating meat is because I found one recipe which I didn’t marinate the meat and I loved it.

The recipe is from Po’ Boy Livin’ Rich, he calls it Rainbow Stuffed Chicken.  It is boneless chicken breasts stuffed with bell peppers.  You use red bell pepper, green bell pepper, yellow bell pepper, and orange bell pepper.  Red onion helps add to the rainbow.  I love bell peppers as you know if you have read some of my posts.  Also, if you have read any of my posts you know I love cheese and mushrooms and this recipe has that too!  Yum.  This recipe really hits on all of my favorites.

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia at the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, ZumbaSome people do not like sweet peppers because of their strong flavors and I bet it is because of their strong flavors that I can eat this meat without it having been marinated.  The peppers provide enough flavor.  And, of course, there is salt and pepper, but again, if you’ve read my blog for a bit you know I don’t like pepper!

Another thing I really like about the recipe is that you don’t cook the vegetables beforehand so the peppers don’t get too cooked.  I LOVE raw bell peppers, but I am not a big fan of the cooked variety.  So not cooking them before stuffing them into the chicken allows them to remain crunchy and not get too cooked.

I actually think I left out the mushrooms.  I just used the peppers.  That was an accident as I love mushrooms.  I think I might cook the mushrooms up a bit, because while I love my bell peppers raw, I like my mushrooms cooked.  I like this dish very much.  I actually have not made it recently and looking at the pictures makes me want to go make it for dinner now.  I don’t have all the colors of bell peppers, so I will wait until I do.  I encourage you, if you like chicken and bell peppers, to try this recipe.  You will not be sorry.  It is easy, but it takes like it is a difficult thing to make.  Ya know, one of those recipes!

You can find this tasty recipe at:  Po’ Boy Livin’ Rich Recipe: Rainbow-Stuffed Chicken

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It’s Not the Turkey Making You Tired

Posted by terrepruitt on November 26, 2011

A while ago I heard something that explained the myth around turkey and tryptophan.  But I couldn’t remember what it was so I was thinking about it and I realized that it probably isn’t really the amount of tryptophan in the turkey that causes people to get sleepy it is more likely the combination of foods that are being consumed during a holiday meal AND the amount.  I was thinking that all the carbohydrates would be a reason that people feel sleepy after eating a turkey dinner.  So, of course I looked it up and the wonderful Wiki had a lot of great info.

First of all, the amount of tryptophan is less in turkey than in cod, soybeans, Parmesan cheese, and cheddar cheese.  It is slightly higher in turkey than chicken, beef, and pork chops.  A direct quote from Wiki:  “It is particularly plentiful in chocolate, oats, dried dates, milk, yogurt, cottage cheese, red meat, eggs, fish, poultry, sesame, chickpeas, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, corn, spirulina, and peanuts.”  Basically protein based foods. Tryptohphan in turkey has been blamed for many people falling asleep after a Holiday meal.

Tryptophan is an essential amino acid so that means we must eat it because our bodies cannot produce it.  If you are experiencing depression, anxiety, irritability, impatience, impulsiveness, inability to concentrate, weight gain or unexplained weight loss, overeating and/or carbohydrate cravings, poor dream recall, or insomnia, according to WHFoods, you could need to add more tryptophan to your diet.  Adding more foods that contain high amounts of tryptophan could possibly help you with these things.  It helps form serotonin which can help you feel better and help you sleep.

The ByteSize Science did a little video explaining that tryptophan does not make you sleepy.  This video says there is LESS in turkey than in chicken.  It explains that tryptophan on its own could cause you to be sleepy, but the amount in turkey has to compete with all the other food and so it is not enough to actually cause you to be tired.  This video also says that most people eat more calories in one Thanksgiving meal than they normally it in a regular day.  This huge amount of food makes the body have to work extra hard to digest the food.  The blood goes from the brain to the stomach which causes the tiredness and grogginess.

Not sure how the turkey-tryptophan myth started, but science has proved it to be exactly that – a myth.  So instead of blaming turkey, and the amino acid that our body needs to make necessary compounds, for our post Holiday food coma we should actually acknowledge it is probably the amount of food and the combination of food that is responsible.  Armed with this information we could eat our turkey without fearing it will cause us to get sleepy and maybe eat less food and less carbs and avoid the food coma that usually ensues a Holiday meal.   What do you think?

This is a portion of a chart on Wiki:

Food Protein [g/100 g of food] Tryptophan
[g/100 g of food]
Tryptophan/Protein [%]
cod, atlantic, dried

62.82

0.70

1.11

soybeans, raw

36.49

0.59

1.62

cheese, Parmesan

37.90

0.56

1.47

cheese, cheddar

24.90

0.32

1.29

pork, chop

19.27

0.25

1.27

turkey

21.89

0.24

1.11

chicken

20.85

0.24

1.14

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