Quinoa Chicken Stuffed Peppers

Stuffed Peppers

I’m a huge fan of stuffed peppers but for some reason they always seemed complicated with too many steps.  It also takes about an hour of prep/cook time which usually is too much time for my hungry stomach.  However, today I was craving something cheesey and I also happen to have ground chicken I didn’t know what to use for (it was on sale so I stocked up).  I could have made tacos, but I figured why not get a little more adventurous.  I looked at a few recipes, then realized I want to use different ingredients in different quantities because well what I had available wasn’t the typical beef and rice and beans. I’m also a spice addict and the recipes I saw mostly called for too much salt with too many steps so I decided to go rogue.  Luckily, this actually worked out and I think is a winner for a repeat.

Stuffed Peppers Recipe

6 bell peppers
1 pound ground chicken
1 medium size onion
Several cloves of garlic
1 can diced tomatoes
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1/2 cup uncooked quinoa
1 cup chicken broth
Pepper, salt, oregano, red pepper flakes, paprika to taste
1/2 cup shredded Cheddar cheese

Directions

  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Cut the tops off the peppers, and remove the seeds. Cook peppers in boiling water for 5 minutes; drain and put to the side
  2. In a large skillet, saute garlic first for 3 minutes, add onions and saute for 5 minutes.  Add chicken and saute until cooked (took me about 8 minutes).
  3. Stir in the tomatoes (I drained the water), quinoa, 1 cup chicken broth and Worcestershire sauce, pepper, oregano, paprika, red pepper flakes. Cover, and simmer for 15 minutes.
  4. Remove from heat and stir in the cheese.  I used weight waters Mexican cheese because it’s what was in my fridge but I think sharp cheddar would have been yummier
  5. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. (175 degrees C). Stuff each pepper with the chicken, quinoa mixture, and place peppers open side up in a baking dish. I had some juices left in my pan from the mixture so I put a little bit in each pepper to make them juicier.  I sprinkled a little cheese on top and cover the pepper with the top that I cut off earlier
  6. Bake  25 minutes – I baked uncovered

Munching away!

Malden Eats – Oya Cuba Cafe & Sun Kong Dim Sum

This blog has been mostly running and no munching, so here’s an update on a few new Malden eats that I’ve discovered and am in love with.

Oya Cafe – I’ve been stalking and waiting for Oya to open up since November if not earlier because let’s face it, Malden sadly has limited fine dining options to eat.  We like to call fancy, any pizza joint that has a table cloth.

Oya Cafe has opened and I rejoiced.  It’s a chic Cuban cafe by Malden Square with a great lunch and dinner menu.  I’m still hoping they’ll have a brunch menu eventually.  A girl can hope!

Oyá cafeRopa Vieja – Braised Shredded Beef with Sauté Red Peppers, Onions, Garlic, and Sofrito, Served with White Rice, and Tostones.

That was seriously, probably the most delicious meat I’ve ever eaten.  Very tender with lots of sweat juicey flavor from the red peppers

Oyá cafe

Soup, Tony’s dad order.  I didn’t taste but it looked very pretty.

Oyá cafe

Cuban sandwich that took serious commitment that Tony and I were able to fulfill.

The order place we have become regulars at is Sun Kong in Malden for dim sum.  While we don’t speak a word of Chinese and the wait staff don’t speak English, we meet in the center with the language of pointing.

Sun Kong Malden

Steamed sweat pork buns

Sun Kong Malden 2Fried scallion  pork dumpling, sesame balls with red bean paste, and fried sesame ball shrimp goodness.  Not official names but it’s what they are.

Sun Kong Malden 3

Our first attempt at ordering the steamed sweat pork buns ended up with the baked version.  Bottom is another fried shrimp goodness but not as good at the sesame version and soupy dumplings.

Yum yum! And doesn’t require a trip to Chinatown!

Have you found any good local eats lately?

The 20 mile run did not break me and weekend eats

So I’ve been pretty quiet for most of Sunday and Monday as I half convinced myself with my Googling MD skills that I somehow broke part of my diaphragm or ab muscle.  I woke up on Monday with still a dull ache and kept on being freaked out.

Luckily I found out during my runch that I am not broken!

I was so happy to have no ab pain that I wanted to sing!

6.1 Miles a little over 53 minutes at Incline 3

Then after work I felt so great that I went to 90 Minutes of Bikram and sweated out a kidney or two.  Actually I didn’t feel that great but I had a Groupon that was expiring this week so I forced myself to use it.

It was okay.  I’m a little paranoid about pulling something so I kept all my stretches conservative and didn’t really test out my limits too far.  Overall muscles felt better and my soreness from the weekend run is almost gone.

Onto other more exciting? things like food!

Why do frozen meals never look as good as the picture on the box?  And always soo salty!

Luckily over the weekend I had a great series of eat that didn’t come nuked.

On Friday I feasted my tummy on Sel Del La Terre. A trendy French gastropub type of place.

The coolest part of the restaurant is this decor that hangs and their french martinis.  The food was well made but they could have used a higher quality of steak.  I definitely struggled with cutting and chewing my meat.

The wine sauce was soo good, I dipped my fries in it!

On Sunday, I took Tony on a lunch date to B&G Oysters, a cute little restaurant in the South End. It was Resturant Week in Boston so a pre-fixed 3 course lunch at Boston’s finest dining establishments are only like $20.

I got brave and ordered Oysters.  Although Tony claimed he hates Oysters and wouldn’t touch one, I have evidence otherwise.

He got one the three course lunch with battered shrimp, perfectly smoked and pan seared Cod and a peach dessert.  Sharing with his favorite of course.

I stayed on the shell fish theme and ordered an app of muscles in garlic tomato sauce.  Life just doesn’t get better.

 Have you eaten anything yummy lately?

Back to Running business

As my holiday came to an end I wasted no time in getting back to (running) business.

Tuesday 10.5 miles broken up with 6 for lunch and 4.5 after my slow stretch and strength class.

Today was the same 6 during lunch that felt difficult and draining with the humidity on full blast in the gym. B I went in the late afternoon after everyone worked out so the sweat of all others was fully in the air!

I’m excited for the half marathon in Providence at the end of August and wish it was sooner as I get a little depressed without racing. B I would race Tony but he just gives me a dirty look and says no.

Since I have nothing introspective to write, I’ll entertain you with pictures of what I ate (last) Wednesday since this Wednesday its less picturesque.

Arugula, shrimp and weird coleslaw from the cafe!

My favorite “cooking” creation as of late – quinoaB . rainbow of chopped peppers, sprouted tofu with sesame oil and lots of red pepper

Mango and spinach coconut milk protein shake; try not to like it, I dare you!

And yes I have to confess, Georgetown cupcakes is as amazing as everyone says it is. I’m not a cupcake type of gal (cookies are my true love) but this pumpkin baby held my heart for the hour. B It just opened up on Newbury so feel free to check it out!

Celebrating my 2 year anniversary with Tony at Salts

July 4th is a special day… not only is it America’s birthday but it’s also Tony and my anniversary and we all know what’s more important!

This year Tony took me out to Salts, aB French influenced contemporary AmericanB restaurant. B Their own organic farm is located in Canterbury, New Hampshire and I’ve been salivating over photos of their food since I read about it a few weeks ago in a foodie mag.

We started with the highlight of the meal!

Just kidding! B While we waited for our app, the waitress brought over this soup that was a mix of roasted peppers and mushrooms! B So good. B The plate is so big and crazy though.

Next came our appetizer!

Bergamot Cured Ocean Trout that theyB splitB between two plate so Tony and I didn’t have to fork it out on who can eat faster so we could eat more.

All for the main course?

All mine! B Just kidding, this was the roasted duck for TWO… or just me on a long run day. Luckily for Tony I only ran a 3 miles that day. B It was perfect, crispy on the outside, soft and juicy on the inside! B I ate the apple herb stuffing and turnips in seconds and then I progressed to the beast.

They carved the duck for us and this is what the plate looked like for each of us. B We almost cleaned it and I thought we did a great job on the duck… that is until I turned around and saw there was still more than half of it left. B We did call it quits and took it to go. B A perfect dinner for later in the weekend.

Tony is hard at work there.

We were too full for dessert but the waitress brought these over with our check and how could we say no to free cookies

Yup, I guess we weren’t as full as I thought we were.

Quality price I pay for alwaysB forgettingB my camera but I guess memories are memories even in all blurry forms.

One of my favorite dinners with my favorite guy!

A weekend of salad making

On Saturday, Tony and I had our first party at the new house, our house. B We were celebrating his Dad’s 75th birthday. B We debated how to go best about serving food and in the end decided to make it ourselves. B Tony made two types of humus (from chickpeas andB black beans), as well asB ItalianB roasted fries, buffalo chicken, turkey and hamburgers. B I on the other hand stuck to what I know, produce.

I stopped by the farmer’s market on Friday atB CopleyB and brought those cool rainbow carrots, chives, and cucumbers which I forgot to use! B My first task was to cut up some veggies for the humus. B I pickedB celery, yellow pepper,B zucchini, those yellowB SunkistB tomatoes.

Next came the salads

Baby Spinach, Red Onion, Orange and Red Pepper, Sunkist Tomatoes,B CeleryB & Dill dressed in an Olive Oil VinegarB mix

Then I got busy on my current summer addiction!

Baby Spinach, Orange & Red Peppers, Tomatoes, Red Onion, Dill, Chickpeas, Goat Cheese drizzled with a little bit of Olive Oil

And ended with my favorite Russian Salad! B I’ll share the recipe but for now all I’ll say is that it involves pickles!

I wish I had pictures from the party but once the guests came I was too busy making sure things were up and running to be aB paparazzi!

Running in 95 degree weather

Well for one I can’t say it’s the most fun I ever had but I didn’t give up.

11 miles 1:40 average pace of 9:05 which includes a 5 minute break of stopping by the house to refill on water and splash my face like crazy.

I kept a good 8:30 pace for the first 7 miles and after that… well it was the run 9 minutes walk 1 minute of getting myself to hit 11. B The heat just drained me. B Every time I stopped, sweat poured. B I guess that was some motivation to run. B If I ran, I didn’t feel the sweat.

I started the run at 6:15PM when I thought the weather would drop and wind would pick up. B No such luck. B Luckily I skipped my huge snack I have at 5Pm and only had fruit. B Had I had my yogurt andB granolaB before the run… well it might have been less pretty and sweat would not be the only thing I was dripping.

I knew water was essential. I also knew that I could notB finishB my run on just one bottle so I planned my route with a stop by home. B Sadly unlike the winter times, Flynn ice skating ring is closed and so is my usual water/bathroom stop. I used one Nuun tab (lemonade flavour) to keep someB electrolytesB and I think it worked great. B I got hot and tired but never dehydrated. B No horrible cramps like the ones I got from Gatorade during the Boston Marathon.

After the run it was finally time to refuel! B Best part about hot weather, I’m finally not cold. B Being cold is a common theme in my life and I’m usually too cold to have smoothie. However, not today!

Russian Green Smoothie – Plain Kefir, Baby Spinach, Frozen Mangos and cold water (I would have used ice but I had none). B I added some protein because I’m pretty sure I ate almost none today aside from my breakfast. B We’re a little behind on food shopping in the Run To Munch household.

Jack Agreed that it was way too hot for anything

The rest of the running week is going good so far.

Monday – 6.1 miles 54 minutes 8:51 pace at incline 3. B I could have pushed it faster but I felt I should take it easy after running 10 mile son Sat & Sun. B It was nice for a run to finally feel easy again, or maybe the treadmill incline is broken which happens often.

Tuesday- Cross training on the elliptical for 6.25 miles – 34 minutes. B I wanted a quick sprint afterwards so I did 2.32 in 19:23. B I did the class at the Y except it was like a 200 degrees in there so even the instructor didn’t really want to do anything other than sit in child pose. B I have a whole rant about how much the Malden Y sucks but I’ll save that for another time. B I have to confess though, I still haven’t swam once yet this summer since joining. B Even though I brought a swim cap and a speedo… B one day… one day.

I finally used my stove this week after living in the house for 2 weeks. There’s only so much leftovers and take out I could live off.

Masala arugula & veggies with rice and beans for meatless Monday. B It might not be Julia Child, but I love my arugula.