Who said that eating healthy, whole foods was difficult? These two simple dinners prove that it just takes a little bit of creativity to prepare tasty, whole food meals, even after a long day at work.
The Baked bruschetta chicken was inspired by a pretty crusty looking red onion left over from the previous weeks grocery shop. This meal took hardly anytime to prepare, and in fact, I did some weights at home while it was baking in the oven.
As for the Thai chicken salad, I had some bean sprouts and edamame from my latest visit to the Asian supermarket and thought they would be tasty in a salad.
Actually, that is not so creative after all, but hey, I ended up with two nutritious and easy dinners with protein from the chicken and vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and fibre from the vegetables.
1 or 2 chicken breast (for a light dinner share 1 chicken breast between two or if you are feeling hungry have a whole chicken breast per person)
1 red onion, diced
1 tomato, diced
¼ cup balsamic vinegar
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tablespoon dried basil or 2 tablespoons fresh basil, finely chopped (I didn’t have any fresh basil so I had to go with the dried option)
250 grams frozen spinach
¼ cup cottage cheese
Pinch of nutmeg
- Mix together the diced red onion, tomato, balsamic vinegar, garlic and basil. Season with salt and pepper.
- Butterfly the chicken breasts (I didn’t really do this properly; I made a half-assed attempt at it. Here is a link to the proper technique if you are willing to do take the time to do it properly http://www.goodhousekeeping.com/food-recipes/cooking/tips/g1952/butterfly-chicken-breast/?slide=6).
- Place the chicken breasts on a baking tray lined with baking paper and spoon the bruschetta mixture over the top.
- Bake in the oven at 180°C for about 30 minutes (my PhD was on Campylobacter jejuni, a bacterial species that lives in chickens and is the world’s leading cause of gastroenteritis so I am particularly paranoid about cooking chicken and tend to over cook it just to be safe).
- For the creamed spinach, thaw the frozen spinach in the microwave for about 4 minutes. Mix in the cottage cheese, nutmeg, salt and pepper and serve with the Baked bruschetta chicken.
Thai chicken salad
Makes 2 serves
1 chicken breast, cut into thin strips
1 vegetable stock cube
2 tablespoons soy sauce
Juice of 2 limes
3 tablespoons coconut milk
1 clove garlic, finely minced
½ teaspoon ground ginger
¼ teaspoon chilli flakes
½ a 250 gram packet of bean sprouts
1 carrot, peeled into ribbons
1/3 red capsicum, cut into strips
1 cup cucumber, thinly sliced
½ a tomato, thinly sliced
1 cup shelled edamame
1 shallot, green part only, finely sliced
- Mix together all the ingredients for the dressing.
- Crumble the vegetable stock cube into a non-stick saucepan along with ¼ cup of water. Add the chicken along with half of the dressing. Cook the chicken over medium heat adding water as necessary to prevent sticking.
- While the chicken is cooking, prepare the salad by mixing the bean sprouts, carrot, capsicum, cucumber, tomato, edamame and shallots in a large bowl. Serve the chicken over a serving of salad drizzled with the dressing.