Lightened Up Kung Pao Chicken

Lightened Up Kung Pao Chicken - Chew Nibble Nosh

Have you ever had one of those nights when dinner just completely sneaks up on you?  That was last night for me.  I’d had a busy day, and was a little drained.  The kids were home from school, homework was done, I had a half an hour until my husband would be on his way home, and we needed to eat on the early side of the evening because Avery had to be somewhere.  I told myself that I’d sit down for a half an hour and just take a breather.

Just about an hour later…

Sesame Chicken Stir Fry: Cooking with McCormick Skillet Sauces

Sesame Chicken Stir Fry - Cooking with McCormick Skillet Sauces  - Chew Nibble Nosh

It took a little while this year, but our after school craziness is officially in full swing.  I remember when my kids were younger, and parents of older kids were always telling me, “Just you wait.” when I’d remark on how busy their afternoons were.  Well, that time is here for me now, and it seems like I spend at least a chunk of many afternoons running someone around town.

On nights like that, I’m eager to find solutions to help ease the craziness, and help dinner get to the table quickly…because I know my busy bunch is hungry.

Asian Style Pork Stir Fry

Asian-Style Pork Stir Fry - Chew Nibble Nosh

This has certainly been “one of those weeks”.  Every night this week has been a little bit crazy, and when nights are a little bit crazy, I need dinners like this.

Stir fries are a great way to throw together a complete meal in a hurry, and this one was really tasty.  There are a couple of extra steps with this one, but it’s still a really simple meal to throw together when time is short and life is nuts.

Five-Spice Orange Beef and Broccoli

Five-Spice Orange Beef and Broccoli - Chew Nibble Nosh

Got a busy night?  Stir-fries are a quick solution for a night when dinner prep just can’t be time-consuming.  My biggest beef (no pun intended) with stir fries, though, is that the meat involved can often end up cooked to death.  Even though it’s quick and easy, the thinly sliced meat that facilitates that quick cooking time can sometimes end up rubbery and just plain overdone.

Stir Fried Noodles with Beef and Vegetables

Stir Fried Noodles with Beef and Vegetables - Chew Nibble Nosh

 I like to think that person who created stir-fry was a busy parent.  It really is the perfect meal for a crazy, running-the-kids-to-and-fro kind of night.

We had this for dinner on one of our crazy evenings, and it reminded me that I need to make stir fries more often.  The meat and veggies in this version could easily be substituted with other things I have hanging out in my fridge.  Gotta love a meal that’s easily adaptable.

Instead of serving this one over rice, it incorporates some fun, chewy, cellophane noodles into the mix.

Stir Fried Noodles with Beef and Vegetables 1 - Chew Nibble Nosh

Quick Curried Chicken with Cashews

Curried Chicken with Cashews - Chew Nibble Nosh

Christmas vacation is over.  What a bummer!  It was a fantastic, much needed break for all of us in the Chew Nibble Nosh house. Tomorrow marks the beginning of a new semester of school, after-school activities, and our usual craziness. Plus, sadly, it also marks the start of when I need to start setting my alarm clock again.  That’s always a rough one for me.

Oh, well.  Let the busy begin!

Lightened Up Sweet & Sour Chicken

This is a recipe that I’ve been making for years.  It’s simple, and quick, and perfect for a crazy weeknight.  Plus, anytime I make a lighter version of a traditional recipe and it manages to hold on to some of the integrity of the original, I’m a happy girl.  Come to think of it, this may have a little more integrity than the original, if the original you’re thinking of is the day-glo red/orange stuff they serve at fast food Chinese restaurants.  How do you make a sauce that color?  I mean, really.  There’s something about that sauce that kind of creeps me out.

Chicken, Broccoli and Cashew Stir Fry

In a never-ending attempt to get my youngest to “eat more green”, I decided to crack open my old Noteworthy cookbook again and stir up a quick and easy stir-fry that my Mom used to make when I lived at home.  I don’t think I’d eaten it since I lived at home (and that was a looooooong time ago), but for some reason, it popped into my head the other day!  Thankfully, once I looked at the recipe, I realized that it was quick, easy, and definitely something I could throw together on one of our busiest nights.