I am NOT a cook. Oh, I can whip up a box of mac-n-cheese with the best, but tell me to create an interesting dinner aside from the 5 things I always make, and you will find me standing in front of a cold stove and an empty pot.
I am also overweight. Why? Because I am NOT a cook! Therefore, I grab the easy, the processed, the fast. If I can't pronounce the ingredient list, it's easy and thought process free!
I am NOT happy. I am not healthy. I am not energized and I am not sleeping. I am also NOT dieting. The mere THOUGHT of restricting myself of yummy foods causes me to fail before I even begin. That is why I have decided to make a lifestyle change with my family.
I was given the inspiration by a couple of websites I happened upon. www.100daysofrealfood.com made it sound so easy! The "rules" were easy enough...."If it has more than 5 ingredients do not buy"! I can SO do that! One large grocery bill later and I have my counters FULL of healthy, under 5 ingredient, unprocessed foods!
I AM NOT A COOK!!!!!!!!!
How the BLEEP do I put this all together to make yummy, appetizing meals?! Wow, I didn't think this one through. So, I go to my trusty laptop and google "What the BLEEP do I make for dinner?!".....turns out, that's an actual website! HA! I turned to my Facebook Family (we all have one) and begged for help. One soul answered my plea and pointed me to www.TheFast20.com where meals are planned out for me! I'm being TOLD what to make! I can SO do that too!
And thus begins my journey into healthy cooking, albeit, hand-held like a toddler, but hey, we all have to start somewhere! GULP
Hopping John and Grilled Chicken
For Hopping John For Chicken
3 Tbs. grape seed oil 3 Tbs grape seed oil
1 medium onion, chopped 4 large chicken breasts*
3 cloves garlic, minced or pressed 1 tsp. each ground cumin, kosher salt
1 red bell pepper, chopped black pepper; combined
2 celery ribs/stalks, finely chopped
4 cups black eyed peas**
1 cup brown rice
3 cups low sodium chicken or vegetable broth
3 cups warm water
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp black pepper
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1 bunch kale or swiss chard eaves, stems removed and cut into thin strips
1 medium lemon, juiced
*2 breasts are used in Flatbread meal
** soak dry beans at least 4 hours before using.
1. Heat grape seed oi in a large skillet over med-high heat.
2. Dry chicken with paper towel and pat with seasoning mixture
on both sides.
3. Arrange chicken in pan and sear for 5-6 minutes on each side
or until no longer pink in the middle.
4. Transfer chicken to a cutting board, setting 2 breasts aside for
Flatbread meal. Cut two breasts into 1/4" slices.
1. Melt butter in a medium stock pot over medium-high heat.
2. Saute onion, garlic, bell pepper and celery until softened, about 5 minutes.
3. Add Beans, rice broth, water, salt and peppers. Stir to combine.
4. Bring to a boil then cover, reduce heat and simmer for 25 minutes or until
beans are soft.
5. Stir in kale and lemon juice; cook for additional 5 minutes.
To serve: Place 2 cups of hopping john in a bowl. Top with 4-5 chicken slices.
Crock Pot Version:
Follow steps 1-4 but only sear the 2 chicken breasts for this meal 3 minutes per side.
Sear the other 2 breasts completely and store. Transfer other 2 breasts to crock pot.
Add remaining ingredients. Set on low and cook for 3-4 hours until liquid is
absorbed and rice and beans are tender.