What's in your fridge?

 

Aloha friends!

Do you ever have those days where you have zero desire to leave your house? Or maybe it's one of those days where you open your fridge and say to yourself "I have nothing to eat," while so many food items are really staring right back at you? Regardless, if you really put your mind to it you can probably whip up something with what you already have at home; unless of course you ACTUALLY have an empty fridge, then my friend, you are ---- out of luck!

A few weeks ago I was in the midst of battling what ended up being the '40 day cough'. That bugger was persistent and wasn't going away without a fight. Usually when I'm sick and miserable I crave citrus, particularly tea with lemon and honey. I know when I'm truly sick when I don't want my morning coffee, just tea with lots of lemon (gasp...you heard correctly coffee lovers).  Anyways, I was having one of those days where I just wanted to stay in and continue wallowing in my own self pity on the couch while watching Netflix. But what to eat!? I peeled myself off the couch to survey the fridge situation and got some inspiration to try a Moroccan-inspired quickie meal. Truthfully, after visiting Morocco I've been meaning to make a point of trying to re-create some of the meals I ate on my trip, but I wasn't feeling that ambitious this evening. But considering how miserable I felt, I was quite impressed with how my meal turned out:

Moroccan-inspired citrus-quinoa salad and fig infused chicken.

Moroccan-inspired citrus-quinoa salad and fig infused chicken.

The meal was pretty simple. I cooked quinoa, chopped up some spinach and orange, and made an citrus vinaigrette (orange juice, lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper all to taste). I marinated the chicken in fig jam, balsamic vinegar, and whole grain mustard. Simple and delicious!

This week was also one of those weeks. With the crummy weather earlier this week, I just wasn't feeling the great outdoors. Thankfully, my part-time work allows me to work from home, comfy in my sweatpants. I saw a recipe on the Marilyn Dennis show earlier this week for fried chicken that's just actually baked, and I was excited because I realized I had all the ingredients in my fridge. Success! I can stay in my comfy pants and have my fried chicken too. The recipe calls for the chicken to be marinated in buttermilk, garlic, salt (and hot sauce if you wish). Then you coat the chicken in bread crumbs and oats, oregano, paprika, salt and pepper.

In my version, I just changed up the spices and used za'tar, paprika, garlic and onion powder, salt and pepper. But wait....did I say paprika? Because in reality I put in cayenne, a ton of cayenne! That's what happens when you don't label your spices and assumed you were dumping in paprika. I even used it on my sweet potato crisps, and that's when I discovered my mistake. Let me tell you there was nothing sweet about those potatoes anymore.

Letting that chicken marinate

Letting that chicken marinate

That red spice was deceiving!

That red spice was deceiving!

I had to laugh. I can't believe I had just done that. And now I wasn't sure how I was going to stomach my meal since any kind of hot spice does not usually agree with me, but I couldn't let the whole meal go to waste. Thankfully, I think the buttermilk might have minimized the hotness of the spice so the chicken went over well, but my eyes were watering while eating my crisps. All in the name of using what's in my fridge!

The great thing about this chicken recipe was that it made for a good leftover sandwich for lunch the next day. I used a sprouted grain bread (my new fav), the chicken, brie, apple, spinach, with a slight drizzle of honey. Insert into the panini press and viola! I enjoyed my sandwich with extra apple slices and a few candied pecans.

Is there anything better than melted brie?

Is there anything better than melted brie?

Hopefully I've inspired you to look in your fridge to see what you have to work with. You may just surprise yourself with what your inner chef whips up! 

xoxo Michelle

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