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Sunday, October 10, 2010

Slow Cooker Orange Chicken

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Today is a special day for me, and one I've been looking forward to for over a year. Some of you may remember reading on my Blogiversary post that I started this blog at the encouragement of my husband last August when I was sidelined from running with some lingering overuse injuries. Since then I have slowly but surely returned to running and find that these two hobbies, running and blogging, are the perfect complements (how else could I eat the excessive amounts of sweets you see on here? :)) Today I am doing what I was supposed to be doing last October, and that is running the Chicago Marathon. Since the end of June I have been diligently training, waking up week after week at 4 am to go out and run distances further than I ever thought possible. Today is when all of those early mornings come to fruition and I get to enjoy, yes ENJOY, seeing my hard work pay off. My run today is not about setting any records or proving anything to myself. Rather, it is a celebration of the months of training and the fact that all those tears last summer about how I'd never run again were all for naught! While I'm out running and then recovering today, enjoy this healthy take on Chinese food. I have a post scheduled for tomorrow but if I get the chance, I'll get on here and update you on all today's race!

Meals like this make it possible for Ryan and I to work 40+ hours a week while participating in a variety of church, social, and educational activities without being forced to subsist on takeout or cereal for dinner. There's nothing flashy or particularly special about this dish, but it absolutely hits the spot when we rush home and have less than an hour to eat before running off to the next activity.

This literally took less than ten minutes to put together one night. Then I simply stuck it in the fridge overnight, removed it early the next morning, and left it to warm all day long (directions below are for high or low temps, but I went with warm because I knew we'd be gone for close to ten hours!). Many hours later, we came home to enticing smells. I quickly made some instant brown rice and steamed broccoli and before we knew it, dinner was served. (Note: this is not your standard takeout orange chicken...if you're wanting the authentic stuff, this will disappoint you. But this is a nutritious alternative that won't give you a 'fried-food' tummyache!)

Fast. Easty. Tasty. (And healthy enough that you can splurge on caramel apple nut bars for dessert!...to be posted tomorrow...)

One Year Ago: Whole Wheat Pizza Dough

Slow Cooker Orange Chicken
from Fake Ginger
*makes 2-3 servings

-1 lb boneless chicken breasts, cut into two-inch chunks
-1/2 tsp salt
-1/2 can frozen orange juice concentrate, thawed
-3 tbsp brown sugar
-1 tsp balsamic vinegar (I was out and subbed red wine vinegar)
-3 tbsp ketchup

1. Place cut chicken pieces into the crock pot.
2. In a small bowl, mix salt, orange juice concentrate, brown sugar, vinegar, and ketchup.
3. Pour sauce over chicken, mixing gently to coat chicken with sauce.
4. Cook on low for 6 hours or high for 3-4 hours.