Monday, February 2, 2009

Grilled Chicken and 4 Veggie Couscous

During the amazing meat department sale my favorite chicken breasts were half off, so I grabbed 5 packages. I love the Perdue thin sliced chicken breasts because a one pound package usually yields six to eight thin breasts, versus the three super chunky ones of a regular breast package. Also, they are usually trimmed very well with none of the tendons and veins that sometimes appear in the regular breasts. Because they're so thin, they cook up super quickly and are also great for smaller portion control and milking two to three meals out of one package.

Tonight, I made a quick marinade of Drew's garlic Italian dressing, garlic powder, salt and pepper. I heated my grill pan really hot and cooked the chicken on the stovetop. I like Drew's dressings because they're all natural and whey free, but the Italian one turned out to be a dud on flavor. It's taste is so mild it gets lost on a salad, so I've been using the bottle up as a marinade or in place of olive oil sometimes.

While the chicken was cooking away, I put 1 1/4 cup of water in a small saucepan, a splash of Drew's dressing (in place of the recommended olive oil) and the seasoning packet from Near East's Herbed Chicken couscous.

I love the tenderness of couscous. It satisfies that pasta craving, but doesn't leave you feeling all weighted down and tired like a big bowl of spaghetti sometimes does. I saw it made on Bizarre Foods with Andrew Zimmern once and it was really cool! This woman had a very large, shallow wooden bowl filled with the ground semolina. She'd sprinkle water over top and roll her hands over the whole thing, forming the tiny pasta balls we know as couscous! She made it look easy, but I definitely think it's a practice-makes-perfect technique! Getting the right amount of water, and the right hand process down. I'm sure if I tried it'd just be big, soggy blobs and other areas still completely dry!

While the water and seasonings were coming up to a boil, I chopped about 1/4 cup each of carrots, celery, green pepper and broccoli from the Superbowl party's leftover veggies. I threw these in the boiling water for about a minute, then dumped in the couscous, cut the heat and put the lid on.

Five minutes later, we had a delicious plate of tender, juicy grilled chicken and a 4 veggie couscous that hit the spot!

***Giveaway alerts***

Biz is having her beginning of the month giveaway here.

Hangrypants is giving away a jar of almond butter here.

I had so much fun with my giveaway last month, I've decided to make it a monthly thing, too! In honor of my birthday, it'll be every month on the 23rd, so make a mental note!

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