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Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Emergency Dinner - Broccoli Chicken

Most of you know already that I am an extremely busy, overtaxed, slightly neurotic mother of four. Two grown daughters, and twin boys that are now 2 1/2. My oldest daughter is turning 21 in a couple of weeks, my youngest daughter just graduated from high school and my boys... Well, my boys continue to try to snuff the life out of me on a daily basis. I think they may be succeeding. Sometimes I take a step back, look at myself in the mirror and laugh hysterically. What in the world was I thinking having more children at 40? I am really starting to think that women have a built in "forget" mechanism that blocks out our children's ages at 18 months - 4 years and ages 13 -17. We have to. Otherwise there would be no children on this earth. So I'm smack dab in the middle of the 18 months - 4 years category. But this time around I have been blessed with two "full steam ahead" maniacs at once. Those of you that have boys are nodding in agreement right about now.

Between the screaming and the throwing of objects, the constant protests, the refusals to nap even when their eyes are practically rolling back in their heads; the demands for "more juice!" (it's 90% water... don't get all freaky on me), the eating of rocks, prying my son's mouth open only to find "wings and legs" and the obligatory wail for having a toy snatched out of tiny hands followed by the retaliation bite and conquer, I guess I'm right where I should be... staring down the double barrel of toddlerhood at point blank range... and I think I'm out matched. Don't get me wrong. I love my kids. (when they're sleeping). :) So with my flack jacket, my toddler mace, my helmet and an occasional glass of wine, I spurn on.

I think you can actually hear the theme song from Barnum and Bailey's Circus when you walk through the front door of my house. It is a literal circus combined with a zoo and a war zone most days. Not only are the kids at a tough age but the dishes in the sink are having little dish babies right before my eyes and the laundry looks like the blob oozing out the top and spilling over the side of the basket. Seriously! We only have four people living in this house and two of them are under three feet tall. How can there be so much laundry?

So in between my usual duties: nurse maid, referee, diaper changer, taxi, nurturer, boo boo fixer, good cop/bad cop, facilitator, house keeper and physical education coordinator (not to mention jungle gym and pillow) I also have to find time to cook. Well, lately I haven't had any. So today I am happy to bring you my latest emergency dinner.

What you'll need:

A rotisserie chicken

broccoli florets

olive oil or oil of your choice

for the sauce:

5T wheat free soy sauce (I apologize to the paleo gods, but I'm not giving it up)

2tsp sesame oil

2T rice wine vinegar, no sugar, no salt version

1tsp garlic powder

1tsp ginger

1tsp honey, optional

black sesame seeds for garnish

nuts: almonds or cashews... or which ever you like

What you do:

Start by whisking up the sauce. If you are using more than half of the chicken or if you like a stronger flavor (like me), double the sauce recipe. Debone and cube up the rotisserie chicken and put it in a bowl. Poor the sauce over the chicken and let it take a little swim. Take out a large pan and get it nice and hot with your oil. Next place the raw broccoli in the pan and stir-fry it for about 3 minutes. It won't be cooked through so here's what you do next. Take a 1/3 cup of water (or chicken broth if you want to get all fancy) and poor it in. BEFORE YOU START: Have the lid to the pan in the other hand. Quickly poor in the water and cover the broccoli with the lid. Now you are steaming the broccoli but it will still have a "pan fried" taste. Take the lid off when all the water is absorbed. Stir in the chicken and heat it through.

Plate this beauty and sprinkle with black sesame seeds and a palm full of chopped nuts.



  1. I've been a long time lurker of your blog.I am also a mother to two boys, 2 & 8 and of course my husband (who I count as my 3rd child sometimes:)) I love this recipe you've given me because lately it seems like every night these past few days have been emergency dinner days. Thanks so much and hang in there.

  2. i also have two boys - 19months apart. currently 6 and 4. you describe life with two boys perfectly from where i stand. thank you for sharing it in a way that made me smile and be thankful for it! have just started primal WOE 5 days ago and think i'm loving it. not managed to fit in the exercise part into my head yet but we'll get there!