Thursday, December 17, 2015

two healthy fast food gluten free recipes

baked "fried" chicken

First off, this is not fried! It may resemble fried chicken in taste and texture, but these little drumsticks were actually baked in a 350 degree oven for about an hour (oh, and I covered them in aluminum foil for half the time while they baked). It's a healthy alternative for those that want the taste of fried chicken without the grease. The secret to make this baked chicken taste good is Mayo! I know it sounds gross, but it works a lot better than dipping the drumstick in egg and milk before covering them in the bread crumbs; I actually got the idea from a recipe I found on about 6 months ago. It works great--the mayo actually helps "lock in" the moisture, which is a must when baking chicken; it also helps the bread crumbs adhere a lot better. So here is the recipe, this makes enough for about 8 drumsticks:

1/2 cup mayo (there's actually a canola oil version now!)
8 chicken drumsticks
1 cup garlic and herb bread crumbs
1 tsp savory
1 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp salt and pepper

This is a great alternative that will not disappoint! Even Jose said he could it eat every day! That's a pretty big claim to make :).

fast tacos: college friendly food!

Every once in awhile, either out of pure tiredness, lack of time, or hunger, I need to make something fast. Putting this together reminded me of my college days, when I could eat a bag of Pepperidge Farm Snickerdoodles for dinner, (this was before I had my gallbladder removed) and when eating healthy wasn't a major concern, obviously! But now that those days are over, I'm realizing that even though college kids don't necessarily have much time to cook on a day to day basis, there should still be more recipes available to them that are healthy while also fast and easy to make. The almost-ideal meal would be one that could be prepared in 20 minutes or less while still including more flavor and nutrients than the average college student's boiled water and ramen noodle "specialty" :). (I tended to lean more toward peanut butter and honey sandwiches, but even that wasn't "healthy" since that alone was my dinner when I got tired of dorm food!)

I think these "fast tacos" are both easy to make and healthy to eat. Though a kitchen is required, and sadly they aren't always available in dorms, it's still a generally low-key dish as far as preparations are concerned. I basically used:

about 1 1/2 cup shredded pre-crock-pot-made chicken 
1 organic potato, diced
1 roma tomato, diced into squares
1/2 a small green bell pepper
1/4 tsp pepper
1/4 tsp garlic salt
1 tsp epazote
1/4-1/2 tsp cilantro
1/4-1/2 tsp oregano

I cooked the potato cubes first, then added the rest of the ingredients; cooking them all together for about 10 minutes over a medium flame. I also added beans, and even though I usually make my own beans, I didn't have 3 hours to do that today so I used a great organic alternative. Then I just added about 2 TBSP PACE (this stuff is good, I never mind using it :), a pinch of pepper, and a few shakes of mesquite McCormick seasoning. After that, I heated the beans up in the micro and rolled them up with the cooked chicken/spices/potatoes and cheese in a warm whole wheat tortilla! This meal came together fast and it was pretty good; this is my kind of fast food :).