Most of us have had restaurant food that we wish we could make at home. I used to feel this way, until I recently discovered that re-creating my favorite restaurant food was not really that hard.
One of my favorite restaurant dishes is almond chicken and vegetable rice. I used to order this dish twice a week from a restaurant in my neighborhood until I learned how to make it myself. I start this recipe with a package of skinless chicken strips and a handful of sliced almonds. After I clean the chicken strips under cold water, I lightly pat them dry with a sheet of paper towel. Next I season the chicken with a teaspoon of black pepper and a tablespoon of low-sodium soy sauce. I heat up a small pan and coat it with a tablespoon of olive oil. I let the chicken strips brown on each side for three to five minutes. While the chicken is cooking I pour in a handful of almonds. After the chicken strips have finished cooking, I take them out of the pan and place them on a plate to cool.
To make the vegetable rice I start with a cup of brown rice, teaspoon of salt and cumin, and a pot of boiling water. I season the water with the cumin and salt and then add in the rice. After the rice has cooked I let it simmer for ten minutes. While the rice is simmering I dice red, yellow, and green peppers, a half stalk of celery, and three red cabbage leaves. I put all the vegetables in a bowl and season them black pepper, nutmeg and chili flakes. After the vegetables have been fully seasoned I blend them into the rice. I turn the pot on low heat so the rice and vegetables can meld together. Next I spread the chicken strips and toasted almonds onto a platter and top them with the vegetable rice. To finish the dish I sprinkle on tiny bits of green onions.
Some of my other favorite restaurants foods are desserts. One is bread pudding topped with a rich caramel sauce. Since I am trying to cut back on the calories, I came up with a trimmed down version of this dessert. Instead of using chunks of vanilla cake (like the restaurant version), I use chunks of gluten free bread. I soak the bread with a half cup of organic Almond milk and sweeten it with three tablespoons of pure honey. Next I mix in some organic nuts and raisins. I let the pudding bake for fifteen minutes in a 350 degree oven.
In my opinion, both of these recipes taste just as good as the restaurant versions.