Thursday, January 29, 2009

Power Cooking!

Ahem...let me present to you something that will absolutely rock your world. Introducing....Power Cooking. What in the world is Power Cooking? Oh, I'm so glad you asked. Ever heard of Dream Dinners? Well, it's sort of like that, but you don't have to pay anything to do it (except for the ingredients for the meals, of course!) Courtesy of the wonderful people at The Pampered Chef, I have 10 simple recipes to share with you. All you need is about an hour on a Sunday afternoon (or whenever!), and you will have meals for your family for the next 2 weeks. Or maybe even more, depending on the size of your family. There are two different Power Cooking meal for chicken and one for ground beef. We'll start with the chicken one. There are 5 different recipes in this meal plan, 3 of which I will show you today. You will need one pound of chicken per recipe you choose to make. There are "To Prepare and Freeze" instructions, as well as "To Serve" instructions. For freezing, you need a pack of gallon-sized ziplock bags. They even have those neat vacuum bags now in the grocery store (but you certainly don't need that do freeze these, you can just push all the air out on your own). Once you put the recipe in the bag, flatten it out, and label it, you can freeze it for up to 3 months! OK, this will be a long post, but I am going to go ahead and paste the recipes for three of our Power Cooking Chicken recipes. Those of you who have tried Power Cooking before, what do you think? If this all seems confusing to you, I do lots of Power Cooking Shows. You can invite your friends over and I will teach you all how to do this. They can even bring their own meat and actually leave the party with 3 meals to freeze for their families! So fun! Keep checking back for our other Power Cooking recipes in future posts. Here's a preview of tomorrow's post...what if you could have dinner on the table in a matter of 15 minutes? I'm going to show you how...stay tuned!

Make-Ahead Chicken
3 lb boneless, skinless chicken breast
or thighs
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1. Cut chicken into ½-in. cubes using
Chef’s Knife.
2. Heat oil in (12-in.) Skillet over
medium-high heat 1-3 minutes or
until shimmering. Add chicken and cook
7-10 minutes or until chicken is no longer
pink, stirring occasionally. Drain chicken,
if necessary.
3. Divide chicken into three portions.

Chicken Stir-Fry

To Prepare and Freeze
In Bag 1, combine:
1 portion of Make-Ahead Chicken
1 cup frozen shelled edamame
²/³ cup prepared stir-fry sauce
In Bag 2, combine:
2 medium carrots, peeled and cut
into julienne strips
3 cups small broccoli florets
2 tbsp Asian Seasoning Mix, optional
Seal Bag 2 and place into Bag 1; seal.
Freeze for up to three months.
To Serve
• Heat 1 tsp vegetable oil in (12-in.) Skillet
1-3 minutes or until shimmering. Add
contents of Bag 2. Cook 3-5 minutes or
until broccoli is slightly tender.
• Add contents of Bag 1. Cook 3-5
minutes or until broccoli is crisp-tender
and chicken is hot.
• Serve stir-fry with 6 cups hot cooked
rice. If desired, garnish with sliced green
onions and coarsely chopped peanuts.

Smoky Black Bean Chicken Wraps
To prepare and freeze

In Bag 1, combine:
1 portion of Make-Ahead Chicken
1 can (15 oz) black beans, drained and
1½ cups water
1-2 tbsp Smoky Barbecue Rub

In Bag 2, combine:
2 cups cooked rice
1 tbsp Smoky Barbecue Rub
Seal Bag 2 and place into Bag 1; seal. Freeze
for up to three months.

To Serve
• Place contents of Bags 1 and 2 into
(12-in.) Skillet. Heat over medium-high
heat 3-5 minutes or until heated through.
• Divide 4 oz shredded cheddar cheese
evenly among six 11-in. flour tortillas;
top with chicken mixture and optional
ingredients such as lettuce, tomatoes and
barbecue sauce or Louisiana hot sauce.
• Roll up tightly, cut wraps in half on a bias.

Dijon Chicken Noodle Toss
To prepare and freeze:

In Bag 1, combine:
1 portion of Make-Ahead Chicken
2 cups frozen peas
In Bag 2, combine:
¼ lb deli ham, diced into ¼-in. pieces
1 can (10¾ oz) condensed cream of
chicken soup
2 tbsp Dijon mustard
Seal Bag 2 and place into Bag 1; seal. Freeze
for up to three months.

To Serve:
• Cook 12 oz rotini pasta according to
package directions; drain.
• Meanwhile, place ½ cup water and
contents of Bag 2 in (12-in.) Skillet;
cover. Bring to a simmer over mediumhigh
heat, stirring occasionally.
• Add 8 oz sour cream to Skillet. Reduce
heat to medium; add contents of Bag
1. Cover and cook 4-6 minutes or until
chicken is hot, stirring occasionally.
• Toss cooked pasta with parsley. Spoon
chicken mixture over pasta and sprinkle
with 1 oz grated fresh Parmesan cheese if desired.

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