Thursday, August 16, 2012

Double Duty Chicken Tacos

Sorry for my absence.  I've been a bit preoccupied with sending my youngest to Kindergarten, working on several aspects of volunteer work, and trying to adjust to the new school schedule which now includes my role as Crossing Guard.  My husband asked me to write down tonight's supper recipe (I make up a lot of meals), so I thought that would be a good thing to share.  A good part of my mental energy is on meals right now as I try to keep the girls well fed so they can do their best at school.

Tonight we had Chicken Tacos and Spanish Rice with lots of fresh veggies incorporated.  Here is what I did.

Spanish Rice
1 cup rice
1 can (14.5 oz) diced tomatoes with sauce
2 cups water
diced fresh tomato
diced fresh pepper
salt to taste
2-3 pinches of cumin
chili powder to taste
Mix ingredients together.  Bring water to a boil and then reduce to medium high heat.  Let the rice cook while you prepare the chicken.   Rice takes about 40 minutes to cook.  Don't check it too often as the steam helps the cooking process; but do check it once in a while to be sure it isn't drying out before it is fully cooked. 

Taco Chicken
Dice several boneless, skinless chicken breasts (my package was about 2 1/3 pounds).  Coat a frying pan with olive oil and add chicken.  If chicken starts to stick add chicken broth as needed.  I also added some diced zucchini just because I had it.  I thought the chicken and seasoning would reduce the objection to the vegetable - I was right!  Season to taste with Taco Seasoning of your choice (I use homemade from a recipe by Jonni McCoy in Miserly Moms).  Depending on your taco seasoning, you may also need additional salt.  Cook until chicken is fully cooked.

I served the Spanish Rice and Taco Chicken with taco shells (purchased for 10 cents a box at the local dent and ding store - yippee!), lettuce and cheese.  I had other traditional taco toppings available, but the rice and meat were so flavorful we skipped the other things.  I should also tell you that I intended the rice to be a side dish, but most of us thought it was tasty in the tacos with the meat and cheese.

The question was asked, "Why did you use chicken instead of meat?"  I decided to ignore any discussion about chicken also being meat and answered this way, "To balance our eating and save some meat for another time so we don't run out." 

One daughter picked up a stomach bug on her first day of school so she couldn't eat this meal.  But the rest of us who ate it liked it and went back for more!  In my book it's a double hit because I could pack leftovers to send to school!

Last school year was Picky Eater's first year of full day school and I worried about her!  How would she survive with a limited menu all day long instead of a plethora of choices to fit to her mood?  So I spent a good deal of time studying lunch packing blogs - it's kind-of addicting.

Now, I give back to the lunch packing blog world with my contribution of Chicken Tacos Lunchbox Style. 

I made two lunches (assuming Sickie will be well enough for school) because one child wants school lunch tomorrow.  In the round Tupperware container I have 2 shells for the younger child, and 3 for the older child.  They're mini shells - aren't they cute?!  In front is a Lock&Lock sandwich box with silicone cupcake wrappers as dividers (learned from my previous lunch packing blog research).  I filled two sections with chicken, one with cheese and one with lettuce.  In the morning I will add fruit and a drink to each lunch and Voila!  Lunch is made.  I suppose I should add a fork or spoon - better go do that now before I forget.

What are your favorite tacos?

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