Since the beginning of our marriage, I have often prayed for “creativity” in the kitchen. Basically, that “creative” part means cost efficient ways to produce tasty meals. I can recall days when I stood in the middle of our kitchen, staring at an empty stove and praying, “God, please help me be creative with what we have in our cabinets.” And, viola, He pops an idea into my head. Well, that’s basically how these two recipes came to be. We’ve been eating a lot of rice lately, and I just have to say – these two recipes are winners!
Rice and Beans (serves 4)
1 medium onion diced
1 Tablespoon minced garlic
1 can chicken broth
¾ cup water
½ tsp. smoked paprika
1 cup uncooked rice
1 can black beans – drained and rinsed
½ package of kielbasa – diced
Sauté onion in olive oil; add garlic and sauté about 2 more minutes. Add one can chicken broth, uncooked rice and smoked paprika. Allow rice to cook until soft (approximately 15 minutes depending on the type or rice) Add black beans and kielbasa. Cook 5 more minutes. Serve. Sour cream and/or cilantro could be added to the top when serving.
Chicken Fried Rice (4 servings)
The beautiful thing about this recipe is its adaptability. You can modify it to match the ingredients you have hanging out in your cabinets. Use one, two or all three veggies. (I apologize for not getting a picture of this recipe. I didn’t think about writing it down until long after it was all gone.)
2 cups cooked rice (You want your rice to be fairly dry after its cooked. If the rice is overly wet during the frying process, it could cause it to become clumpy.)
2 cups cooked, shredded chicken (pork or steak would work, too)
¼ cup diced onions
½ (or so) cup peas
½ (or so) cup corn
½ (or so) cup diced carrots
Sauté onions in olive oil; add cooked rice. Allow rice to get warm; use a spatula to push the rice to the edge of the pan so that an empty circle is left in the middle of the rice. Crack eggs into this circle; allow eggs to begin cooking; add soy sauce to eggs; begin scrambling eggs right in the middle of the rice, when the eggs are fairly cooked begin working them into the rice. Add vegetables, meat, salt and pepper. Stir well. Additional soy sauce can be added to final dish.