Brown rice, pineapple, grapes, peaches, apples...
Whaaaaaat!? Am I leading you astray? Are we straggling and lost -- veering far off course, into the realm of evil, blood-sugar-spiking, weight-promoting foods?
Breathe easy, friends! You are soon to discover that Trim Healthy Mama isn't such a narrow path after all! This is the wild side of "E"! A delicious, fun, daring and energizing meal... and it is "on plan"!
3 Boneless, skinless chicken breasts
3 C Cooked brown rice, cooled
1 Red Delicious apple, cored and chopped
1 C Green, seedless grapes
1 C Peaches, sliced, fresh or frozen
1 C Celery, sliced thin
1 C Fage 0% fat Greek Yogurt
2/3 C Pineapple Tidbits, drained
1/4 C Swanson Organic Coconut Shreds
1 tsp Swanson Organic Coconut Oil
1/2 tsp Wrights Hickory Liquid Smoke
1/2 tsp Wrights Applewood Liquid Smoke
2-3 "doonks" THM Pure Stevia Extract
THM Himalayan Mineral Salt, to taste
Pepper, to taste (optional)
*When I make my rice, I like to cook it in a light broth, using "Better Than Bouillon Chicken Base".
Yield: 6-8 generous servings
1. Add the coconut oil to a fry pan or skillet, on medium heat.
2. Add 1/2 tsp Hickory Liquid Smoke and 1/2 tsp Applewood Liquid Smoke to the pan; stir.
3. Place the chicken breasts in the pan; cover with a lid. Bring to a simmer while processing the other ingredients.
4. To a medium bowl, add the rice, apples, grapes, peaches, celery, pineapple and coconut shreds. Stir gently to incorporate, without breaking down the rice or mashing the fruits.
5. In a cup, add THM Pure Stevia extract to Greek Yogurt, and stir. (Start with 2 "doonks" - A doonk is 1/32 of a tsp.) Taste and add more sweetener if desired. *The yogurt should be pretty sweet, because it will be sweetening the entire salad dish... but you don't want it horribly sweet either...
6. If you wish to add salt and/or pepper, you can stir it into the yogurt now; add yogurt mix to the salad bowl, and stir gently, until well-incorporated.
*Unless the broth I cooked my rice in was fairly strong, I add a bit of salt here.
At this point, even without the chicken, the salad is tasty and could easily be used as an "E" side dish for a lean protein meal, such as boneless, skinless chicken or turkey breast, or even a very lean Pork Tenderloin. (To remain in E, you need the meat to be 96% - 99% lean.)
7. Once the chicken is cooked through, let it cool a bit and slice it into bite-sized pieces.
* To speed this along, you can place on a plate and set in the fridge while you are setting the table and cleaning up from the cooking process.
This smells heavenly while it is cooking, and when you bring out these gorgeous chicken breasts, you may waver at the thought of putting them INTO the salad! As an alternative, if you prefer, you can always eat the breasts separately from the salad... but the smokey-goodness of the chicken IS part of this salad's charm so... for our family, into the salad it goes!
8. Once the chicken has cooled, add to the salad, stirring carefully until well-coated.
Serve immediately - but if you can, hide some left-overs for your lunch tomorrow!
On that note...
With the "Food Freedom" I have found on Trim Healthy Mama, I have been freed from the constant "counting" of fats, carbs, and calories, and I no longer calculate how much exercise I must do to burn off a given meal... Liberating, truly! (I can't believe I lived that way for my entire, adult life!)
For this meal though, I have stepped into what used to be terrifying territory.
The truth is, there is a bit of misunderstanding when it comes to certain food items. I often see posts in the THM Facebook group which state several of the ingredients listed here are "off-plan". This is, simply, not true.
Brown rice, pineapple, grapes, peaches, etc can all be eaten in an E setting... but they are higher in natural sugars than other fruits -- so we do want to eat them in moderation, less frequently than other fruits, and we really need to be sure we add a solid, lean protein source and a bit of fat to the meal to help blunt that sugar-spike.
For all its glory here, 6 generous servings equal (roughly) the following:
7 g of fat
40 NET g carbs
20 g protein
Before you worry that you have gone over the fat limit... The above numbers include the naturally-occuring fat found in the chicken breast - which we do not need to count. So, we are well within E range! *Also note... Some coconut shreds are much higher in fat content then the Swanson's Organic.