Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Pantry Party

I have a confession: When my roommate and I are cooking, we like to talk about which Foodnetwork personality we are most like, and sometimes (ok-often) we pretend that we are that particular chef. Our identities always change depending on what we're making. For example, if one of us is using butter, we are automatically Paula Deen. If we don't measure anything, we are Rachel Ray, and when we just feel like speaking with a southern accent then we are the Nealys (except we never make anything BBQ). Well tonight, I was undertaking another pantry clean-up recipe and felt very much like our new favorite TV chef Claire Robinson from 5 Ingredient fix. 

I used a few more than 5 ingredients, but my new rule is to not purchase any more than one ingredient (that way I don't add to the current stock I am trying to get rid of.) So tonight I created an Apricot Chicken Quinoa salad. I don't want to brag, but it's my blog so I suppose I can- it was GOOD! This was another that I made up without a recipe, and therefore slowly contributing to my growing self-confidence in my cooking creativity. I had everything except the dried apricots already! Here it goes:

Apricot Chicken Quinoa Salad


1 cup dry quinoa ( you could also use rice, or any small grain)
1/2 cup chopped dried apricots
1/4 of a large red onion, chopped
6 oz cooked chicken
3/4 cup canned chickpeas (garbanzo beans), rinsed and drained
1 cup chicken broth
1 cup water
Dried thyme


1. Rinse quinoa in a fine mesh strainer. Mix with broth, water, onions, and a few dashed of thyme in a saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat.
2. Reduce to medium low and simmer for about 15-18 minutes.
3. When there are about 3-5 minutes left of simmering, add the dried apricots.
4. When the liquid is absorbed after 15-18 minutes, remove from heat. Add cooked chicken and chickpeas, and season with salt. Cover and chill. It is best served cooled.

Serves 4

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