Monday, July 18, 2016

Chicken Stir-Fry with Japanese Kimchi

Chicken Stir-Fry with Japanese Kimchi

Cooking with Frozen Prepared Foods.
In this day and age, most people are concerned about what they eat and where the food comes from. “Fresh is always best!” Although that’s true, it’s not always reasonable or available. That’s where “frozen” fresh options are the next best thing! Today, more and more companies are making the “fresh food” market available in the freezer section. The choices are abundant. Vegetables, fruits, prepared grains such as rice and millet, and even prepared meats such as grilled and breaded chicken, fish, and even eggs. 

In some cases, the frozen options for vegetables and fruits are healthier than the fresh versions found in the produce section. That’s because they are picked when ready (instead of prematurely), and immediately flash frozen. Whereas the fresh versions are usually picked before they are ripe, and then sprayed or coated to safely transport them from farm to grocer. So “fresh” isn’t so fresh once it makes it to the meal table.  

As for the frozen prepared foods such as rice, pasta, meats, and side dishes, more and more healthy products are being developed. The sodium levels are reasonable, the ingredients are minimal in comparison to the traditional conventional frozen foods on the market, and the flavors and prep time are phenomenal! Semi-homemade cooking can now be a viable way to a nutritious, healthy diet and lifestyle. It’s all in the ingredients!
Engine 2® Plant-Strong®Grain Medleys – Wild Rice Blend

What is Kimchi, and Why Is It Healthy?
Kimchi is a traditional fermented Korean delicacy, made from vegetables including cabbage, and a variety of spices and seasonings. Kimchi basically means ‘salting of vegetables’.  Kimchi is an exceptional food to promote digestion. Since kimchi is fermented, it contains healthy bacteria called lactobacilli that aids in the digestion process of the body. It is a source of probiotics attributing to the process of fermentation involved in its preparation. The probiotic action helps to breakdown the vegetables, resulting in more bioavailable nutrients, which are absorbed into the body, immediately benefiting your health and vitality. Kimchi benefits the immune system, aids in digestion and nutrient absorption, and overall well-being. The added bonus is that the fermentation process is what gives kimchi its amazing flavor, so it’s great to use in a variety of dishes or as a condiment. If making homemade kimchi is not your thing, there are a variety of great, healthy, and tasty options in the marketplace. Look for minimal ingredients and quality brand names. One of my new all-time favorite kimchi products is the Wildbrine® product line of fermented foods. You can find their products in most natural grocery stores, and online.
Wildbrine JapaneseMiso Horseradish Kimichi

For a delicious, super easy recipe idea using kimchi, and healthy frozen prepared foods, try my recipe below. It’s sure to please!

Chicken Stir-Fry with Japanese Kimchi
(Serves 2 to 4 people)

1 ½ cups frozen baby sweet peas
½ cup frozen organic Thai Jasmine white rice (or other plain white rice)
1 cup frozen spinach
2 large brown organic eggs
2 T coconut oil
3 T organic valley purity farms organic ghee
Ground garlic organic
Bragg’s spice mix
Old Bay seasoning
2-3 T organic vegetable broth

On medium heat, melt coconut oil and ghee in large sauté pan or non-stick skillet. Add chicken strips, rice, peas, and spinach to pan. Stir and heat till chicken appears tender. Add broth and spices, and stir again, continuing to cook until all food is thoroughly heated, checking for cold pieces. Stir in kimchi. Let simmer on low heat for a few minutes more. Toss mixture and plate. Best served in large bowls.

The convenience of using healthy frozen options is the key to this one-pan dish. It saves you time in the kitchen, and makes for a very hearty, healthy meal. You can store leftovers in the refrigerator, or even freeze it for the future. Enjoy!

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