One day, early in summer, Daisy was feeling lousy. She was achy, stuffy, and exhausted. Chuck came home from work early and made supper, allowing Daisy to nap. Luckily for all, Chuck is a good cook. Luckily for all, there was a box of Uncle Ben’s Fast and Natural Whole Grain Instant Brown Rice sitting on the table and a collection of recipes for trying out the product – all courtesy of Uncle Ben’s and Mom Central. Even more luckily, Amigo remembered which recipe Daisy had planned to cook.
Whole Grain Chicken Curry in a Hurry
1 cup Uncle Ben’s Instant Brown Rice (see above for full name of product)
1 1/2 Tablespoons olive oil
1 cup onion, chopped (note: La Petite recommends increasing this)
1/2 cup red pepper, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
2 teaspoons curry powder
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 pounds chicken breast, diced
1 16 oz. can chick peas, undrained
1 cup plain, lowfat yogurt
1 teaspoon cornstarch
1/2 cup slivered almonds
1. Prepare the rice according to directions for four servings (will take about 12 minutes).
2. While the rice is cooking, make the curry in a skillet using the following instructions.
3. Heat the oil over medium heat and add the onion, pepper, and garlic. Cook for about 3 minues until they begin to get tender. Add the spices and stir to coat well. Push the onions and peppers to one side of the pan and toss in the diced chicken. Brown the chicken for about 5 minutes, stirring to prevent sticking and to cook the sides of the meat.
4. Add the undrained can of chick peas and stir to combine the ingredients. Cover and simmer for 5 minutes to continue cooking the chicken. Remove the lid and allow the liquid to evaporate for about 3 more minutes.
5. In a small bowl, combine the cornstarch and yogurt. Stir in the yogurt mixture until well combined. Allow it to thicken and combine with rice.
6. Sprinkle almonds over dish for garnish.
The end of the story: this was delicious. La Petite suggested increasing the onions and considering adding water chestnuts to the mix. Later in the summer I’ll use fresh peppers from the garden or the farmers’ market.
Uncle Ben’s sent more recipes, including a sloppy joe mix and a tex-mex dish, among others. They also sent advice on adding more whole grains to the family’s diet. My favorite suggestions were these:
–Substitute brown rice for pasta in casseroles and soups.
–Use cooked whole grain brown rice in seafood cakes with tuna, salmon, or crab.
–Add leftover cooked whole grain brown rice into any hot cereal recipe and top with cinnamon and a drizzle of honey.
–Make a high fiber risotto using whole grain brown rice; add vegetables such as asparagus or zucchini to increase nutritional value. Zucchini! Another way to cook my zucchini!
I wrote this review while participating in a blog campaign by Mom Central on behalf of Uncle Ben’s and received samples to facilitate my candid review. Mom Central sent me a gift card to thank me for taking the time to participate. The timing was perfect. Chuck and I and the family were very glad to try this new dish, and we’ll be sure to try more!