Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Dinner for 1

Going through my current "lifestyle change" has left me with the quandary of what to nourish my system with... Typically, this time of year I make at least one pot of soup a week and eat off that for a while... My housing situation has changed and I am not as free to make those decisions as I once was (and hope to be again in the not-too-distant future). I have been left with making GF pasta (which gets old really fast) or purchasing frozen dinners. Now, don't get me wrong, frozen dinners have come a long way from the cardboard crap of the past... With steam bags and trays, frozen dinners seem a mighty good (and healthy) option... However, with my dietary restrictions, I can only eat about 1/5 of the offerings, and of those 1/5, I usually only buy 1/4 based on my own tastes... You can see where things get challenging and I end up just going to McD's and getting a plain bacon cheeseburger...

Case in point - I purchased a potsticker entree for my lunch one day... It had red peppers in the "veggie mix" but I was willing to overlook that addition and just pick them out... I also neglected to read the KIND of potsticker that was listed on the front... Getting a tofu one instead of chicken or pork is kind of a let down... Since I was the stupid one who didn't read the package all the way, I made myself eat it... or at least I tried to eat it... The potstickers tasted like sweet and sour feet and the "veggie mix" was entirely made up of red peppers... Yuck!

I had an epiphany! I can purchase potstickers that I like, add some frozen brown rice, and the veggie mix of my choice and make my OWN frozen entree! So I got a small bag of chicken potstickers (a little bit healthier than the pork variety, but still tasty) and some already-frozen brown rice. I added about 1/2 cup of the brown rice to the bottom of a plastic container and added 3 potstickers on top (the # 3 came from the amount in the original "tofu" packaging). Then I topped off the container with broccoli. **IT IS VERY IMPORTANT THAT ALL THE INGREDIENTS STAY FROZEN... MAKE THESE, THEN EITHER MICROWAVE IMMEDIATELY OR PUT THEM BACK IN THE FREEZER**
Still frozen, with a bit of sauce added....

Now, I know that this is NOT a GF dish - the potstickers are made with flour... But since I'm allowing myself to eat the potstickers, I prefer to keep it "gluten-lite" and use teriyaki sauce made with tamari rather than soy... It's a personal preference. If you have a better "sauce" then by all means use it... Pour some over the potstickers (to add a bit of moisture to the skins while they cook) and a bit over the broccoli... Then put the lid on and stick it in the freezer for future use... Don't go overboard or your rice will be overloaded with teriyaki sauce and it probably won't be as good. BTW - Yoshida's sauce would probably be awesome on these!

Cooked, and ready to eat!
When you are ready to eat it, just open up one of the corners of the container to allow it to vent and microwave for around 5-6 minutes... This is very easy to put together and keeps well in the freezer. Great for a night when you are by yourself and don't have the time or inclination to cook a meal... And this way, you know pretty much what went in to it (other than the potstickers, of course) because you picked all the ingredients yourself. Season however you want... I typically add just a bit of black pepper...

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