STIR-FRIED CHICKEN WITH GREEN BEANS AND CASHEWS
Bobby Deen’s lighter version of Chinese takeout.
Hands-on time: 10 minutes
Total time: 20 minutes
½ pound green beans, trimmed and cut into
2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
1 tablespoon low-sodium chicken broth
1 teaspoon rice vinegar
1 teaspoon cornstarch
½ teaspoon Sriracha or other chili sauce
1 tablespoon peanut or canola oil
2 teaspoons chopped fresh ginger
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch pieces
¹⁄3 cup roasted, salted cashews
Bring a medium pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the green beans
and cook for 2 minutes, until crisp-tender. Drain and run under cold water to cool down, then drain again.
In a small bowl, combine the soy sauce, broth, vinegar, cornstarch, and Sriracha
and stir until the cornstarch has dissolved.
In a wok or large skillet, heat the oil over high heat. Add the ginger and garlic and cook, stirring constantly, for 10 seconds. Add the chicken and cook, stirring constantly, until no trace of pink remains on the surface. Add the green beans and the soy sauce mixture and cook, stirring constantly, until the chicken is cooked through, about 2 minutes. Stir in the cashews and serve.
Nutritional count based on 4 servings:
246 calories, 29g protein, 10g fat,
9g carbohydrate, 2g fiber, 293mg sodium
“Everyday Eats” by Bobby Deen
7 p.m. Thursday, April 10. Free. Barnes & Noble
Buckhead, 2900 Peachtree Road NE Suite 310
Bobby Deen grew up on rich, yummy Southern comfort food.
It was all good until about 13 years ago when Deen turned 30. He found himself 25 pounds overweight, feeling sluggish.
The son of star chef and TV personality Paula Deen returned to the gym. The more he exercised and worked up a sweat, the more he changed the way he fueled his body.
“I was working so hard on the physical side, why would I want to blow it with what I ate?” he said in recent interview.
Last year, Deen, released a new cookbook, “From Mama’s Table to Mine” (Ballantine, $22) featuring slimmed-down versions of some of his mother’s most applauded recipes, including a light version of his mother’s Ooey Gooey Butter Layer Cake. (His version? Gooey Less-Butter Layer Cake).
He’s back with a new book that sticks to the theme of preparing delicious but also good-for-you meals. “Everyday Eats,” (Ballentine $22) offers up 120 recipes all under 350 calories that can be prepared from start to finish in less than 30 minutes. The simple recipes include everything from a deviled egg salad to zucchini corn fritters to pasta and bean soup with pesto. He also includes several waist-friendly desserts such as “lighter chocolate-mint shakes” and a strawberry angel food cake.
The AJC recently interviewed, Deen, now 43, who will be doing a book signing at 7 p.m. Thursday, April 10 at the Barnes & Noble store in Buckhead.
Q: There is a whole section on salad meals. How often do you eat salad for dinner?
A: A lot, probably a few times a week. People think salads are boring but you can do a hearty three bean salad with cannellini beans, kidney beans and chick peas or a hoppin’ john salad which is popular in the South, and there’s one salad I have with a poached egg. You can use earthy spinach one day, crunchy romaine on the next, spicy arugula on the third. I also like that we are lucky enough to live near the water and have access to fish. I recently began to enjoy bison flank steaks. It’s leaner and organic and a good, healthy way to get protein. And we do a lot of chicken.
I don’t just eat salads because they are good for me. They are also delicious.
Q: Your new book includes several meatless dishes including a tofu recipe. Have you soured on eating meat?
A: No. I am a carnivore and I have been my whole life, but as men get up there in age, around 40 years of age, it’s more difficult to digest meat. I pick my battles when I am going to eat a steak. If I am going out to a great steak restaurant, I will eat a steak. But I like to eat the way I like to feel. I want to feel good and I don’t want to feel stuffed and bloated. I have been there and done that. I am married now and my wife is a triathlete and is an incredibly fit woman. She is all about the connection between exercise and nutrition. She has has given me a sharper angle of food.
Q: Talk about some of the everyday ways you’ve changed the way you eat?
A: I have food vices. I love potatoes, I love French fries. I love mayonnaise. I have cut out mayonnaise completely from my diet with Greek yogurt. It’s simple and anyone can do it: Add sea salt, a zest of lemon and cracked pepper to Greek yogurt and it works just as well as mayonnaise in any recipe. Parsnips make a wonderful substitute for French fries. Parsnips are like a carrot in shape but they are white and if you peel it and cut it into steak French fry shapes, toss it in olive oil and salt in a bowl bake it at 425 degrees for 35 to 40 minutes, it’s a great substitute for French fries. Parsnips have a sweetness that a starchy potato doesn’t have but if you add a little salt and I like mine with cayenne pepper, it’s delicious.
Q: What are some items you always have in your pantry to throw together for a quick, healthy meal?
A: I always like to have beans like canned kidney, chickpeas and cannellini beans. I know some people don’t like canned food, but I don’t mind canned stuff, and I like to have canned tuna and salmon on hand. I also like to have herbs and spices, and a variety of oils like olive oil and coconut oil. Another item to keep on hand is a bag of frozen mixed vegetables. Warm the vegetables with a little toasted sesame oil, then add flavor by stirring in bottled teriyaki sauce. I serve this stir-fry over instant brown rice for a complete meal in minutes.