Trader Joe’s Rice Medley

A couple of weeks ago Trader Joe’s opened up just 10-15 minutes from my house. I didn’t go during the first week because it was a complete zoo with police directing cars to parking spots. They are still there during peak hours and I’m sure they are getting tired of that by now. My wife and I decided to stop on our way home from some other shopping and  parked at a nearby frozen yogurt place (not TCBY). We grabbed some frozen yogurt (since I now like the stuff) and then headed over to Trader Joe’s.

It was pretty packed inside, but we did manage to look over everything. Personally, I prefer the produce at The Fresh Market. They have a much larger selection. The meat selection was decent as was the seafood. They had a section for gluten free food too – not that we really look for that sort of thing.

We picked up a few things here and there – some burger meat, bananas, and a rice medley. It looked rather interesting and also included barley. We figured we’d give it as shot.

I’d never heard of red rice before, but I like brown rice. How different could it be? The best part was that is cooks in the microwave in about 3 minutes. Just toss the bag in, wait 3 minutes and you’re done. I like that kind of simplicity. It took longer than that to make the Southwestern Salmon that we had with it.

The rice was pretty good. It did taste a little different than our usual brown rice, but it wasn’t bad at all. It came with several pouches so we can have it again a few times before we need to brave the parking lot at Trader Joe’s again.

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Southwestern Tilapia and Brown Rice Recipe

I had some brown rice leftover from when I did the chicken and brown rice and I still have a bunch of tilapia from the BOGO at Price Chopper,  so I decided to try it with tilapia instead of chicken. Since I liked the Southwestern Tilapia, I figured I’d use the same basic seasoning. It’s another quick, healthy meal you can make instead of ordering take-out.

Ingredients

  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 Tilapia fillets
  • Corn, peas , broccoli or other vegetables as desired

Instructions

  1. Mix olive oil and dry ingredients in a food storage bag.
  2. Add tilapia to the bag and shake until thoroughly coated.
  3. Dump tilapia and the remainder of the oil mix in a skillet.
  4. Cook until tilapia starts to turn a bit more white – but not completely cooked.
  5. Add approximately 2 cups of cooked brown rice to skillet.
  6. Add vegetable to skillet.
  7. Use wooden spoon to mix the ingredients and break the tilapia up.
  8. Stir until all ingredients are cooked.

I overdid it a bit on the red pepper. I don’t measure so my list of ingredients is approximate. Apparently, I must have added a bit more red pepper and chili powder as my mouth was definitely feeling the heat. However, that did a good job of masking the fish taste, so overall I will call this a success.

Chicken and Brown Rice – A Quick Healthy Meal

In today’s busy world, it can be difficult to find time to make a good, healthy meal. Far too often, we have found it easier to resort to fast food for times sake and ease of cleanup. That’s a pretty unhealthy trade-off. Worse yet, it’s one you don’t need to make. And here’s why.

Par-boiled chicken and brown rice.

Boil up several pieces of chicken and a pot of brown rice. I usually try to do this over the weekend when I have more time since this is the only part that really requires any serious prep time. Then I bag up them both separately and stick them in the fridge. The chicken will keep for several days so you don’t need to worry about having chicken too many nights in a row.

There are so many ways you can now prepare a quick, healthy meal from the chicken and rice. This is the one I do most often.

When you get home from work, simply take out some chicken and cut it up into bite size pieces and toss it in a skillet. Then add brown rice. Usually, I figure a half chicken breast and one cup of rice per person, but you can pretty much use as much or as little as you like. Now add a vegetable. I generally go with corn, peas, or broccoli – or some combination of them. Next pour some soy sauce into the mix and add some black pepper to taste. Don’t overdo it on the soy sauce or it gets very salty. On occasion, I will add a small amount of chili powder to the mix as well. It only takes about 15-20 minutes from the time I pull things out of the fridge until I have a plate of delicious food sitting in front of me.

 

I’ll discuss some of the other ways you can use the par-boiled chicken and brown rice to make a quick healthy meal at another time. For now, you can always change up the vegetable and seasonings to make the dish fresh so you don’t get bored with it.

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