Quick-fix suppers just may save lives

  • By Judyrae Kruse Herald Columnist
  • Wednesday, September 7, 2011 12:01am
  • Life

A whole lot of Forum households are trying to transition — whether happily or kicking and screaming — from lazy summer days to hurry, scurry, back-to-school schedules.

After-school sports turnouts, dancing, gymnastics, music, chess, you name it, most or many of which activities call for somebody to be somewhere at such-a-such time. And then picked up later at such-a-such time and taken home. More than one somebody is thrown into the “so when’s dinner?” mix, especially if it means different places at different start-stop times, making things even more complicated.

What say, then, we have a couple of quick-fix supper recipes that may not only come in handy, but could even save your life. And maybe become instant family favorites to boot.

We’ve come up with a pair of possiblities for your consideration. Both call for chicken, both are from the clever folks at www.kraftrecipes.com, and both get a five-star rating from reviewers.

Both also apparently have just exactly the right amount of flavor and texture contrasts, turning them into “have again” musts, even with picky husbands and the sometimes hardest of all to please, little and big kids.

Remember, nothing ventured, nothing gained …

Chicken rollups
6 cups packaged coleslaw blend or shredded cabbage
1/2 cup ranch dressing, regular or light
1 each small green bell pepper and red bell pepper, cut into strips
1 onion, thinly sliced
1 1/2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into strips
1/2 cup barbecue sauce
6 flour tortillas (12-inch size), warmed
Toss the coleslaw blend or shredded cabbage with the ranch dressing and set aside. Cook and stir the pepper strips and onions in a large nonstick skillet sprayed with cooking spray over medium-high heat for 3 minutes. Add the chicken strips and cook and stir for 3 minutes, or until no longer pink. Stir in the barbecue sauce and simmer for 3 minutes or until chicken is cooked through, stirring occasionally.

To assemble, spoon the chicken mixture down the centers of the tortillas. Top with the coleslaw mixture and roll up. Cut diagonally in half to serve.

Makes 6 servings.

Note: Leftover rollups, cooled, wrapped and refrigerated, are good cold for lunch.

Firecracker chicken stir-fry
1 tablespoon oil
1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into strips
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 red pepper, cut into strips
1 cup snow peas
1 can (8 ounces) sliced water chestnuts, drained
1/3 cup Asian toasted sesame dressing
1/4 teaspoon crushed hot red pepper (see note)
2 cups hot cooked long-grain white rice, or other favorite rice
Sliced green onions

Heat oil in large nonstick skillet or skillet sprayed with cooking spray over medium-high heat. Add chicken strips and garlic and cook and stir for 4 minutes or until the chicken is evenly browned.

Add the pepper strips and snow peas and cook 2 to 3 minutes or until the peppers are crisp-tender and the chicken is done. Add the water chestnuts, sesame dressing and crushed pepper and cook 2 minutes or until heated through. Serve over the hot rice and garnish with sliced green onions.

Makes 4 servings, 1 1/2 cups each.

Note: For more heat, use 1/2 teaspoon crushed hot red pepper.

Send contributions and requests to Judyrae Kruse at the Forum, c/o The Herald, P.O. Box 930, Everett, WA 98206. All letters and e-mail must include a name, complete address with ZIP code and telephone number with area code. And sorry, but no response to e-mails by return e-mail; send to kruse@heraldnet.com.

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