Friday, October 22, 2010

Chicken and Broccoli

Anyone craving Chinese take out these days? It’s one of those things that you love and hate, isn’t it? Love because it just satisfies your taste buds so perfectly at that moment. Hate because the grease smothers your stomach and your euphoric experience suddenly turns into a very unpleasant, uncomfortable one. But, we’re all human, right? As much as we know it’s bad for us, we give into our cravings from time to time. Luckily, you will never have to feel guilty anymore with this tasty chicken and broccoli recipe that Janice cooked the other week. The chicken was juicy. Broccoli was tender, but still had that bite to it. Hoison sauce and soy sauce rendered those sweet and sour undertones that you look for in Chinese food. Red pepper flakes gave it just enough heat, not overpowering the rest of the flavors. Most importantly, the grease was at a minimum! It’ll hit the spot and leave your stomach happy.

Easy Stir Fried Chicken and Broccoli

4-6 servings


16 oz chicken breast, sliced

2 scallions, chopped

3 garlic cloves, minced

1 tsp corn starch

1 tbsp soy sauce

1 tbsp sugar

1 tsp salt

1 tbsp sherry cooking wine

1 tbsp sesame oil

2 tbsp vegetable oil

5 cups broccoli

1 tbsp hoison sauce

1 tsp cajun seasoning

1 tbsp red pepper flakes


1. Toss the chicken with the chopped scallions, about half the garlic, soy sauce, sugar, 1 teaspoon of the cornstarch, 1 teaspoon of the salt, the sherry, and the sesame oil. Marinate at room temperature for at least 15 minutes.

2. Heat a large nonstick skillet over high heat. Add 1 tablespoon of the oil and heat. Add the broccoli stems, and stir-fry for 30 seconds. Add the florets and the remaining garlic, a bit of water, and season with salt (to taste), and pepper. Stir-fry until the broccoli is bright green but still crisp, about 2 minutes. Transfer to a plate.

3. Heat skillet with 1 tablespoons oil and add the chicken and chili flakes/cajun. Stir-fry until the chicken loses its raw color and gets a little brown. Add the hoisin sauce, return the broccoli to the pan and toss to heat through. Add more water if needed to cook. Taste and season with more salt/pepper/hoisin sauce if you like. For more flavor, you can also use garlic powder and sriracha sauce (for a kick).

Sunday, October 17, 2010


Of the many challenging questions we’re confronted with at 180 Church, there is one that no one ever seems to have an answer to. You would think we’d get better at it, considering that we face this question daily, but the usual responses are an indifferent “I dunno,” a shrugging of shoulders, or an angry “Don’t ask me!” Not surprisingly, on a late Thursday night after small group, a bunch of us stood on the sidewalk pondering this very question…“What the heck should we eat?” Not only did we stand there for at least a half hour, we changed our minds on the way to the restaurant we decided to go to, parked our cars, walked into that new restaurant, walked out of there in a matter of two minutes, and then proceeded towards our original destination. Such decisive people we are, huh? Eventually, we found ourselves sitting in an East Village joint, CafĂ© Mogador. What a charming little place! If you’re craving for some hummus, falafel, grilled lamb, or any other kind of Moroccan/Mediterranean food, this is definitely the place to go. Every person at the table enjoyed their dish, including the hummus that was served with warm, fluffy pita bread. I think we licked that plate clean. For those of you who don’t know what hummus is, it’s basically pureed chickpeas and it’s so incredibly easy to make at home! You can add different ingredients to spice it up however you like-roasted red peppers, roasted garlic, olives, sundried tomatoes…just to name a few- and serve it with pita bread, pita chips, carrots, celery, crackers, or chips. Isn't it such a great, healthy alternative to a party dip or midday snack?


Adapted from


1 (15 oz) can or 2 cups of garbanzo beans, drained

2 Tbsp tahini*

1 Tbsp lemon juice*

1 teaspoon salt

3 cloves garlic, halved*

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 teaspoon paprika**

1 teaspoon minced fresh parsley

*You can adjust the amount of each ingredient to your preference.

**If you want a little more spice, use cayenne pepper or jalepenos instead.


1. Place the garbanzo beans, tahini, lemon juice, salt and garlic in a blender or food processor. Blend until smooth. Transfer mixture to a serving bowl.

2. Drizzle olive oil over the garbanzo bean mixture. Sprinkle with paprika and parsley.

Granola winners!


Thank you all for your comments. They were very helpful in giving us more ideas!
Our lucky winners were Sarah Kang Kim, Cindy Truong, and Nancy Xu. Enjoy the granola!

Stay tuned for more free giveaways...

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Homemade Granola

In honor of all the participants of the League of Macho Men (and Women), 180 Food Network will be sharing recipes that are both delicious AND heart healthy throughout the duration of the competition. I know we all miss the convenience of chicken mcnuggets or junior bacon cheeseburgers, the taste of crispy fried chicken or a fresh baked chocolate chip cookie melting in your mouth…(I’m drooling already). But, how many of us are already feeling more energized, liking the way you’re toning up and shedding those pounds, and maybe most importantly, pooping regularly now without all that fried, artificially flavored, processed stuff in your system? Yea, I thought so. :)

Healthy food doesn’t have to taste bad or be hard to make. Exhibit A- homemade granola. It can be breakfast or a (guiltless) midday snack. When you’re having one of those crazy mornings, you can grab it on the go. When you actually have time to sit down, you can eat it with yogurt, milk, or on its own. The best part of it is that you can easily change the ingredients to your liking- the possibilities are endless!

Homemade granola


2 ½ cups rolled oats

2 Tbsp honey

2 Tbsp vegetable oil

2 Tbsp granulated white sugar or brown sugar

Pinch of salt

1 cup walnuts, coarsely chopped

¾ cup craisins or golden raisins

½ cup semi-sweet chocolate chips (optional)

½ cup toasted coconut flakes (optional)

¾ cup dried apricots, chopped (optional)


1. In a small bowl, combine and mix honey, oil, sugar, and salt. Set aside.

2. Heat a large skillet or sauté pan over medium high heat. Add oats to the hot pan and stir constantly until lightly toasted. Pour the oats onto a baking sheet.

3. Using the same pan, add the walnuts and toast, about 3-4 minutes. Remove from heat.

4. Combine toasted oats and honey mixture in a large bowl. Thoroughly mix with spatula or hands until the oats are coated. Stir in the walnuts and craisins.

5. Pour mixture onto baking sheet and let it cool (the granola will harden as it cools). When cool, transfer to an airtight container and store at room temperature.

Also, because we’re nice, because we love you, because we want you to try this amazing granola,we’re giving away 3 jars of granola. Just comment below with questions, requests, or anything that you would like to see (i.e. I love desserts and I can’t live without them. Can you share any healthy dessert recipes? OR Are there any healthier alternatives to X ingredient/food?). Winners will be randomly selected.

UPDATE: 10/17/10 Giveaway is now closed. Congratulations to our winners Sarah, Cindy, and Nancy! Hope you enjoy the granola :)