Wednesday, May 8, 2019

Mango Chicken Bowls

This is a recipe that I pinned quite a while ago, but I just got around to trying it more recently. I think I've mentioned before that I am allergic to everything (at least, it feels that way!). I'm not actually allergic to much (just cats!), but I get allergy symptoms SO easily. I remember being in New York on my grad trip and getting hives all up my back. My friends and I stopped into Sephora in Times Square to check my back and sure enough I was covered in hives - ugh! One of my friends said she thinks I'm allergic to the shirt I was wearing. Funny in hindsight but so not funny in the moment!

So why am I talking about allergy symptoms? In an effort to lower my allergic reactions, I've been trying to limit my foods that cause histamine. I already feel like I am pretty restricted in what I eat, so I'm not very strict with this low histamine eating, but I try to avoid histamine foods whenever I can. I almost never eat gluten, dairy, eggs or sugar but sometimes I go a little further and cut out some foods that stir up the histamine. This is a low-histamine recipe. These mango chicken bowls are crazy good for you, they're loaded with protein, fiber, vitamin A and vitamin C. My favorite thing about these bowls is that they don't taste as healthy as they are. They are packed with so much flavor - the perfect blend of savory and sweet!

This recipe is from Histamine Friendly Kitchen, you can find the original recipe HERE. I can't wait to browse through this blog for more fun low histamine recipe to try!

Start by marinating 300-400g of chicken (the original recipe calls for 100-200g but I go ahead and do 400g with double the marinade). Cut up the chicken into cubes and marinate it in 2 Tablespoons of olive oil, 2 Tablespoons of honey, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon of sweet paprika and 2 teaspoons of apple cider vinegar.

The chicken doesn't need to marinade for very long - I prep the chicken and let it sit while I work on everything else, then I cook the chicken last. 30-45 minutes is enough marinating time for this chicken.
Once the chicken is sitting in the marinade, prep the quinoa - put 3/4 cup of uncooked quinoa in a small saucepan with 1 1/2 cups of chicken broth. Bring the quinoa to a boil, then let it simmer on low for 15-20 minutes. Then, leave the lid on pot and let the quinoa sit until the broth is completely soaked up.

***If your quinoa has different cooking instructions, follow those instead! This is what works best for my quinoa, but it may not be what works best for yours.
You've probably noticed by now that there a lot of moving parts to this recipe; there's a lot going on, but it's easy to keep under control! While the quinoa is cooking, roast 10-12 pieces of asparagus (the original recipe calls for 8 but we are crazy for asparagus in my house, so I always cook a little extra!). Break the wooden ends off the asparagus and lay them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Drizzle a little olive oil over the asparagus and sprinkle some salt and pepper over them. Next, let the asparagus cook in an oven preheated to 425 degrees for 10-12 minutes until they are bright green and you can easily poke them with a fork.

When the asparagus is cooked, cut it into bite sized pieces. 
Next, grate or shred 1 large carrot and set the carrot aside until you are assembling the bowl later. Peel and dice one mango. Set the chopped mango aside as well.
Last but certainly not least in the preparation process - cook the chicken! In a large skillet, cook the chicken over medium heat until it is cooked through.

Now you'll want to let everything cool a little before putting it all together. The quinoa, asparagus and chicken should be around room temperature so they don't wilt the arugula.

Put a big handful of arugula at the bottom of a bowl. Then, top the arugula with some chicken, a generous spoonful of quinoa, some chopped up asparagus, some mango and some carrot. This is how the bowls get served in my house. Most of us opt to mix everything together and eat it that way but the Bean prefers to eat everything sections by section... the choice is yours! Everything is delicious on its own!

Usually I detail the recipe steps below by separating the ingredients and the directions. I'm going to do that a bit differently today. Because of the nature of this recipe, I'll share the ingredient and the steps for preparing that particular ingredient. Hopefully that keeps everything organized, but as always, let me know if you have questions!

Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Egg Free & Low Histamine
serves 3-4

for the chicken...
300-400g of chicken
2 Tablespoons olive oil
2 Tablespoons honey
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon sweet paprika
2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar

- Cut the chicken into cubes and marinate it in the olive oil, honey, salt, sweet paprika and apple cider vinegar. Let the chicken sit in the marinade while you prep everything else, then come back to cook it at the very end.
- Cook the chicken in a large skillet over medium heat until the chicken is cooked through.
- Set the chicken aside to cool before adding it to the bowl.

for the quinoa...
3/4 cup uncooked quinoa
1 1/2 cups chicken broth

- Add the quinoa and the chicken broth to a small saucepan. Bring the broth to a boil, then let the quinoa simmer on low for 15-20 minutes.
- Put the lid on the saucepan and let the quinoa sit until the water is completely soaked up.
- Let the quinoa sit until it is at room temperature before adding it to the bowls.

for the asparagus...
10-12 pieces asparagus
olive oil
salt & pepper

- Beak the woody ends off of the asparagus pieces and set them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
- Drizzle a little bit of olive oil and sprinkle a little salt and pepper over the asparagus. Cook the asparagus in an oven preheated to 425 degrees Fahrenheit for 10-12 minutes until you can easily poke the asparagus with a fork.
- Cut the asparagus into bite sized pieces and set it aside to let it cool before adding it to the bowls.

for the Mango & the Carrot
1 mango
1 large carrot

- Shred or grate the carrot.
- Cut the mango into cubes.
- Set both the mango and the carrot aside until you are assembling the bowls.

to assemble the bowls...
- Put a big handful of arugula in four serving bowls (one big handful in each bowl - that's hard to word!).
- Top the arugula with some chicken, a generous spoonful of quinoa, some asparagus, some mango and some grated carrot. Then, your bowls are ready to serve!


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