Yesterday's dinner was very frugal- for us. I already had everything on hand, which is why I ended up making the meal in the first place. Normally the sweet bell peppers aren't cheap, but they were on sale last week when I bought some. I also have a HUGE basil bush growing in my flower bed. I always keep coconut milk in my pantry as well. The two things I went to the store for were cilantro and ginger root.
This soup is so easy to make once you've prepped the ingredients. It's also very nourishing.
Chicken Coconut soup, adapted from the coconut soup recipe in Nourishing Traditions
Approximately 2-3 quarts chicken stock, preferably homemade
1.5 cups brown rice
3 cloves garlic
1 inch grated ginger root
1 can full fat coconut milk
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes, more or less to taste
1/4 cup fresh chopped cilantro
salt and pepper
2 cups cooked chicken, cut in bite size pieces
Obviously, the easy thing to do is put a whole chicken in a stock pot, add a couple of carrots and celery stalks, some garlic cloves, bay leaves and some salt and fill the whole pot with water- then simmer on the stove top at least 6 hours, and up to 24 or more hours.
Then you have loads of healthy and nourishing chicken stock and cooked chicken meat. The rest of the soup is easy now.
Ok, so put the stock in a pot. Add the rice and everything but the chicken and cilantro. Cover the pot and bring to a boil, then turn down to a slow simmer. Allow to cook until rice is tender, then add chicken and cilantro and seasonings. Done.
I also made some sandwiches to go with it. I got the idea here, and just adjusted the recipe to what we had on hand.
Roasted veggie Sandwiches
2-3 bell peppers, any color, I used a yellow and two half green/half red ones from the garden
1 onion- yellow one
Slice the peppers into strips, the zucchini into discs and the onion into chunks. Place on a baking sheet and douse heavily with balsamic vinegar. Let marinate 30 minutes. Preheat the broiler to 400 degrees. Sprinkle salt and pepper and drizzle olive oil on the veggies, then mix together. Broil 15 minutes, checking often that they don't burn. You might need longer or less time.
Next you need 1/3 cup mayonnaise (I use Helmans'), 4-5 leaves of fresh basil, finely chopped, one clove of garlic minced and some salt to taste. Mix everything together. Toast some whole wheat buns, spread with mayo and pile the veggies on top. This was so good- the flavors go really well together. My husband loved it. I am actually planning to make them again on Friday- they were that good!