Happy New Year! So, it’s January 2nd… do you know what that means? It’s Day 2 of our Challenge! I hope you have decided on your own goals and rules and have started working on them. Last night, I did the best thing for the start of my diet- I went food shopping. Personally, this is the most helpful thing for me when I am trying to be “good” with my diet. I have found that I will start making better eating decisions if I surround myself around lots of healthy choices. I bought a few yogurts (Dannon Light & Fit), apples, oranges, carrots, Reduced Fat Wheat Thins, Special K Cereal, and Blue Diamond flavored almonds. When I have foods like these in my house or at work, I’m less tempted by my Dad’s snacks and ordering takeout, and am more likely to stick with my diet.
As I mentioned earlier, my “make my own” rule for my challenge is that I am not allowed to eat Chinese food! When I was making Dave and I dinner last night, I started thinking that I’m going to sound pretty hypocritical when I tell you what I made… Spicy Asian Chicken Noodle Soup. In my defense, I totally meant I’m not allowed to eat Chinese TAKEOUT! The soup turned out awesome, and it actually happens to be a recipe from Cooking Light.
I even entered this recipe into my Livestrong My Plate recipes page… here it is! Only 286 calories and about 1.5 grams of fat per serving. Not too shabby!
The recipe was meant to make 4 servings, but since we ate this as our main dish, we ended up getting 2 big bowls and some leftovers out of it. It is spicy, but you can control the heat by how much of the Sriracha you add. Next time, I would add more. Duh.
3 cups fat-free, lower-sodium chicken broth
1 1/2 cups water
1 1/2 cups shredded rotisserie chicken breast
1/2 cup grated carrot (about 1 medium)
1/2 cup thinly sliced snow peas
2 teaspoons Sriracha
2 teaspoons lower-sodium soy sauce
1 1/2 teaspoons Thai red curry paste
1 (2-inch) piece peeled fresh ginger
6 cups water
3 ounces uncooked wide rice sticks (rice-flour noodles)
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
1/4 cup chopped fresh mint
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1/4 cup thinly sliced green onions
– Bring first 9 ingredients to a simmer in a medium saucepan; keep warm.
– Bring 6 cups water to a boil in a large saucepan. Add rice noodles; cook 3 minutes. Drain.
– Place about 1/4 cup rice noodles in each of 4 bowls.
– Discard ginger.
– Add juice to broth mixture; stir.
– Ladle 1 1/3 cups broth mixture over each serving; top with 1 tablespoon each mint, cilantro, and green onions.
The fresh herbs really made the flavor so amazing in the soup! What a nice touch.
Not like your Grandma's Chicken Noodle Soup!
A few notes: I was pretty excited because on my supermarket trip, I bought a container of “Better than Bouillon” instead of the normal Chicken Broth. I find that we end up wasting a lot of chicken broth buying the pre-mixed kind, since they only last about 2 weeks once they’re opened. I really liked the way it turned out, and it lasts a really long time.
Also, although the purpose of using rotisserie chicken breast is to save on time, I actually used my own chicken. I had some frozen chicken that I defrosted, and baked in the oven before shredding. You can really just use whatever you want.
One thing I’d change for the next time I make this (and it was so good, believe me there will be a next time!!) is that I would break up the rice noodles before I cook them. They become very sticky and in a soup it’s hard to eat them with a spoon. Dave and I even had to use forks.
I had to use my fork for the rice noodles!
Since I had made some chicken, I had a little leftover and decided to make chicken salad for lunch today. It ended up being so good and so easy.
First, I shredded the chicken as I already did for the Asian soup. I cut one stalk of celery into small pieces and put about 1/8 Cup of Craisins in the bowl too. I used 1 Tablespoon of Sweet Baby Ray’s Honey BBQ Sauce and about 1 Tablespoon of Olive Oil Mayo. You should always start with less of the sauce and add more depending on how you like it. MMM!
A great use for extra chicken!
The soup was a great idea for satisfying my Asian cravings but keeping the calories and fat so much lower than if I had ordered Takeout.
How have the first few days of the Challenge been treating you? What guilty pleasure food did you decide to give up? Also, what are your favorite healthy purchases at the grocery store that have saved your diet??