When you live alone, and not only love to eat, but you also love to cook, you have to be creative. I’m a big fan of the saying – You are what you eat, eats. In other words, if you are a meat or fish eater, pay attention to how and what they are fed. Drive by a large beef feed lot and that should convince you!
Hungry for chicken, I stopped at a local natural foods store and picked up a whole chicken to roast. I don’t normally do this, but I made some gravy with the pan drippings. I don’t normally eat potatoes either (simply because I forget about them). Maybe I associate meat and potatoes with “sit at the table with the family” type of meals. I picked up a few potatoes at a farmer’s market and that’s the reason for the gravy. Anyway…I had a full week of chicken!
The end of a week’s worth of chicken was a Chicken and Wild Rice Salad
One of the features of my coffee/sandwich shop was the freshly made dressings. They were used on salads, sandwiches and wraps. This salad is a combination of diced chicken breast, cooked and chilled wild rice, red grapes and my Creamy Italian Dressing.
Creamy Italian Dressing
Dice a small onion and a clove of garlic in a food processor
Add: 2 cups mayo (I prefer a store brand, because it’s more bland. It won’t compete with the other flavors)
1/4 cup vinegar
2 tbsp. sugar
1 tsp Italian seasonings
Dice chicken and grapes and combine all.
I love this container for my greens. You could add finely diced Romaine to the salad. I love the idea of a chopped salad!
I’ll be sharing other made-from-scratch dressing later.
What else do I do with grapes? I roast them. They’re a delicious way to sweeten yogurt.
Leftover wild rice? Add a bit of butter, garlic salt and soy sauce.
BTW, as a Minnesotan, I like my wild rice, well, WILD!
Here’s a link to the Red Lake Band of Chippewa, where you can buy their wild rice
This links you to the White Earth band of Ojibwa, for their rice
This is taken from the White Earth website:
“The wild rice of the White Earth Reservation is an all natural grain that grows untamed in the cool clear waters of northern Minnesota. The rice kernel itself is actually a cereal grain produced from an annual water grass plant that rises to a height of three to eight feet with the seed pods emerging above the water’s surface. Wild rice is one of only two cereal grains that are native to North America, and is the state grain of Minnesota.
Manoomin, the Ojibwa word for wild rice, translates to “good berry.” The rice was not only a staple in the diets of the native people for generations; it is also a spiritual food, considered to be a gift from the Great Spirit or Creator. To this day we continue to only hand harvest the rice with non motorized canoes to help preserve the all natural product that we have. By hand harvesting, only the mature ripe kernels are taken ensuring the quality and taste and leaving the remaining immature kernels to ripen and fall back into the water to ensure the next year’s crop.
Our product has an earthy nutty flavor that is high in protein, dietary fiber, amino acids and is low in fat. It is not to be mistaken with genetically altered cultivated or paddy wild rice that is now widely produced primarily in Minnesota and California with the use of pesticides, insecticides, and other chemicals. We take pride in the fact that that we have a naturally organic product that has remained the same for generations.
Growing wild in our natural lakes and rivers, our wild rice is traditionally hand harvested and finished, and is naturally organic- just the way mother nature intended it to be.”