When you see the speed break too late and you brake at the last moment, your left hand automatically flies out to hold your child back. It’s a parent thing and maybe a bad driver with poor eyesight thing. You develop a lot of these tiny parent things over time. You get this urge to wipe kids’ mouths and noses even when they’re not your kids. Equally powerful is the urge to grab someone who’s been irritating you and slap them on their backs. I have to hold myself back from asking my fellow diners to finish what’s on their plate. It is very very hard.
I thought I was a pretty sincere mommy. But last evening after I made the two of them do a 100 sit-ups for fighting with each other, Yuvan came up to me and said I didn’t love him as I loved him when he was a little baby. I didn’t expect that but I promptly recovered and told him he wasn’t as mean when he was a baby. He imitated my cooing from one of his baby videos we’d watched many many times. I couldn’t counter that, so I used my veto powers and told them both that they’d both become too horrid to each other and they’d invite more punishment by arguing. It put an end to the argument. But I was left wondering if what he said was true. I do enjoy the Saturdays they have school and I can laze around at home. I love seeing their faces when they come back from school, dirty, disheveled and their white shoes a muddy brown. I enjoy staying up late after they’re asleep to tap into that quiet me time. What does all this make me? I am not going to try to answer that.
I shared my grocery shopping last weekend and you may remember my mention of Brussel sprouts. This is what I made of the Brussel sprouts. I kept it real simple as I didn’t want to meddle with the basic character of the vegetable. I simply tossed in salt, pepper and olive oil and roasted in a sheet pan along with cubed sweet potatoes. To make a meal out of it, I grilled some chicken breasts after seasoning them with a basic garlicky spice mix. There has to be some rice too because of who I am (a carb addict). Since I claim to the world that I eat healthy, I grudgingly used brown rice instead of regular rice. I did this for you guys. I made a real simple herbed butter rice out of the brown rice. I put the grilled chicken, roasted veggies and herbed rice in a bowl for a hearty, yummy meal. This roasted chicken, Brussel sprouts & sweet potato butter rice bowl (whew!) is a wonderful medley of flavours and textures and a simple salt-pepper-olive oil base ties everything together without taking anything away from the veggies. The Brussel sprouts were reminiscent of cauliflower but in a tiny, leafy form. I quite liked them. They’re best eaten straight out of the oven. Let me know if you make this meal. I’d love to know.
Grilled chicken, roasted Brussel sprouts & butter rice
Grilled chicken & roasted veggies
- 300 gm Chicken breast, sliced cross-sectionally
- 250 gm Brussel sprouts, sliced in halves
- 3 Sweet Potatoes, peeled and cubed
- Salt to taste
- 4 tsp Black pepper powder
- 2 Cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tsp Paprika powder
- 1 tsp Thyme
- 2 tbsp Olive oil
Herbed butter rice
- 1 cup Brown rice
- 1 tbsp Butter
- 1 tbsp Olive oil
- 2 Bay leaves
- 1/4 cup Coriander leaves, chopped fine
- Salt to taste
- 1 small onion, chopped fine
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 3 Green chillies, slit lengthwise
- 2 cups Water
- To make the grilled chicken, slice chicken breasts cross-sectionally. Clean, pat dry and transfer to a large bowl. Add minced garlic, salt, 2 tsp pepper, paprika powder, 1 tbsp olive oil and thyme to the bowl and rub into the chicken. Set aside for 20 minutes – 1 hour. Transfer the chicken to a tray and grill in the top rack of a preheated oven at 200 degrees centigrade for 15-20 minutes. Remove from oven, cool for 5 minutes and slice.
- To make the roast veggies, transfer the sliced veggies to a large bowl. Add salt, 2 tsp pepper, 1 tbsp olive oil to the veggies and toss well. Arrange on a tray without crowding them. Roast in the top rack of a preheated oven at 180 degrees centigrade for 20 minutes. Remove from oven, cool for 5 minutes and serve.
- To make the herbed butter rice, melt butter in a pressure cooker. Add olive oil also the cooker. Add bay leaves followed by the onion, green chillies and minced garlic. Fry until the garlic starts to brown. Add rinsed brown rice to the cooker and fry for 2 minutes. Add chopped coriander leaves and fry for another 2 minutes. Add water and salt and mix well. Taste and adjust seasoning. When the liquid comes to a boil, close the pressure cooker and plug in the weight when steam comes out of the vent. Reduce heat to low and cook for 12-15 minutes. Switch off and allow pressure to subside fully. Open the cooker and fluff the rice gently with a fork.
- Scoop rice into a bowl. Arrange sliced grilled chicken, roasted sweet potatoes and Brussel sprouts atop the rice. Dig in!