Thursday, October 4, 2012

Simple. Delicious.

When life feels out of control, as it has lately, I get an overwhelming desire to take control in any way possible... to cling to the strands of control I can find. That usually results in ignoring the complete and utter mess around me (half empty... or half full, whatevs... boxes strewn around our new house, for instance) and just make some meals. Nothing exacerbates that icky out of control feeling than several days of fast food. I just crave healthy, hearty, delicious, home cooked meals. 

Last night was that night. I spent the previous evening with my darling Little at Trader Joe's filling a cart full of meal necessities (I'm lightly treading into the world of menu planning, which goes hand-in-hand with my love of couponing). Instead of cooking that night, I just enjoyed a couple of Blue Moons and some delicious crockpot beef that Little had gifted us with.

Last night, though, I was going to own the kitchen and own it hard. I had pinned a recipe for barbecue chicken quinoa salad earlier in the week and couldn't wait to try it. I multi-tasked while I prepped the dish... organizing the cabinets, unpacking a few boxes to find my necessary gadgets, measuring cups, pans and so on and listening to a few podcasts (my favorite way to stay spiritually fed while working in the ministry). The end result (albeit it at 10:45 p.m.) was a tasty, easy meal with plenty of leftovers. A must-make for a busy week.

Barbecue Quinoa Salad:
- Barbecue Chicken (I used 2 chicken breasts seasoned with Cajun seasoning and slightly-more-than-simmered then in a small Le Creuset pan for 45 minutes with Trader Joe's Kansas-style barbecue sauce, so the chicken was able to be shredded with a couple of forks)
- Corn (I used three quarters of a cup of Trader Joe's frozen fire roasted corn... thanks for the recommendation, Little!)
- Black Beans (I used some miscellaneous amount... I couldn't locate a can opener, so I sort of jimmy rigged it open-ish with the counter, a spoon and a knife and just shook out the beans that I could)
- Cilantro (I just threw some in there without measuring)
- Shredded cheese (I had a shredded Gruyere-Swiss blend on hand, but white cheddar of pepper jack would be my recommendation)
- Quinoa (I ended up using 2 cups cooked)

Mix that mess in a bowl, add a little more barbecue sauce (I had extra in my sauce pan after shredding the chicken and just poured some of that goodness in my bowl), then top with avocado. I promise you won't be sorry.

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