Saturday, August 7, 2010

Frozen Food Made Gourmet?

Canned and frozen foods are part of my plan for the survival of the fittest. At least I can always tell myself that it's better than running down the street to a fast food restaurant and momentarily meeting the needs of my body but creating a huge nutritional deficit in the long run. If you need easy, economical but still delicious, try this recipe using frozen asparagus and canned mushrooms. That way you can have the ingredients on hand and make it whenever you feel ready.

Asparagus Mushroom Rice Cups
with a Dijon Cheddar Sauce

1 1/2 cups rice (white or brown) I only had white on hand tonight.
3 cups water
1 bag frozen asparagus (or 1 lb fresh)
2 TB butter
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 TB garlic
1/2 tsp dried dill weed
1 tsp thyme
1 can shiitake mushrooms, drained (any variety would work)
2 TB lemon juice
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp ginger tamari dressing (any brand dressing, or you could use plain soy sauce or tamari sauce) *If you use soy sauce, leave out the salt.


I cup almond milk (or cow's milk)
1 cup grated sharp cheddar cheese
2 tsp Dijon-style mustard
1/8 tsp dried dill weed

1. Cook rice as directed. I used a rice cooker to make it easier and quicker. Place the rice in the cooker add the water, hit "on". Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

2. Place frozen asparagus on cutting board. Carefully cut 1/2 inch pieces. Place in a frying pan on low heat and steam until just tender.

3. Add 2 TB butter, onions, garlic, dill weed, thyme and mushrooms to asparagus. Stir-fry until the onions are tender.

4. Place rice in a large bowl. Add the asparagus mixture, lemon juice, salt and tamari to the bowl. Stir well. Place into individual ramekins and bake 15 minutes.

5. Pour milk into a double boiler. When it gets hot, add the cheese and stir till melted. Add the mustard and dill weed. Keep warm over the double boiler. (I place a smaller sauce pan on top of a larger sauce pan for my double broiler. Add 1/2 cup water to the bottom one, stack the smaller sauce pan to sit on top of it and bring the water to a boil.)

6. Run a knife along the sides of the baking dish. Place a small plate on top of it and flip the plate over holding the dish on it. This should loosen the rice and keep it in a nice shape.
Spoon the Dijon cheese sauce over the top and you are finished!

I hope that each of you eat well, play hard, and go a little easier on yourselves when you are doing the best you can.

Peace and Good Eats,

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