Monday, August 13, 2012

Stoplight Chicken

 It's back to school!!!!!! This time of the year brings so many varying emotions to many people, for others, it means heavier traffic for their commute. I am a student, however I have not had a summer break in YEARS, so it means good sales on new clothes for me :) Regardless, back to school time means that Fall is right around the corner, YAY! I know in our family, Fall is the busiest time of the year, but I love it! The Crock-pot is about to get put into overdrive!
 I just recently had my bi-annual dentist appointment (I know, you're thinking "why do I care?") and this is important to my Paleo friends for a good reason! I have never had a cavity (I have had my fair share of oral surgeries and braces, so don't hate me too much) but, I worried a little as I went to this appointment. First of all, it had been a year (I know, gross. But, time flew by, don't judge.) Second, I have picked up a liking of red wine, and third, I have a slight coffee addiction - okay, slight may be downplaying my daily intake just a little, but I do drink it black, that's how I justify it.
(There is a fourth in there too - I have gone to the same dentist my whole life, even driving back from Auburn to see him. He was a good family friend and all the girls in the office we amazing! BUT, it was time to be realistic, I needed a dentist here. So, I sucked it up and found one I think I am going to like!) Anyway, I was told by the dental hygienist and the Doctor, I have a remarkably clean, pretty mouth, even more so since it had been a year since my last cleaning. After confessing my coffee addiction, the Dentist all but asked how I have the mouth/teeth/color I do. Our conclusion? My Paleo lifestyle. Yep! It's a full body benefit, including your teeth and gums. It makes sense, your mouth is the first place affected by your intake. When you eliminate sugar and "fake" from your diet you are not piling layers and layers onto your teeth, plus general health is evident in your gums and speed of tooth degeneration. It's a win-win situation! And, no cavities for me! Yet, another reason to step to the other side!!!!

 Here is another easy, peasy, crock-pot, chicken recipe. You can cut all the veggies the night before (if you desire, of course) throw everything in the slow cooker in the morning and come home to a full meal at the end of the day!!!!
This is also a "they will never know it's Paleo" meal!

Stoplight Chicken
1 pound(ish) chicken breasts
1 green pepper, sliced
1 yellow pepper, sliced
1 red pepper, sliced
6-8 ounces mushrooms, sliced
1 red onion, sliced
1 large tomato, diced

4 large garlic cloves, diced
Olive oil
LOTS of Italian seasons
(splash of red wine, balsamic vinegar, or chicken broth if you have it on hand)

-Pour a few teaspoons of olive oil on the bottom of the slow cooker
(I like to put a few onion rounds on the bottom of the crock pot as well, to sit the chicken breasts on top of. Just a random thing I do...)
-Chicken and diced garlic goes in, drizzle with some olive oil & seasons go on

-Throw all of the peppers on top of the chicken
-Season with some leafy seasons (basil, oregano, rosemary etc.)
-tomatoes go on top of the peppers
-if you are using wine, vinegar, or broth, splash some in 
-finish off with some good Italian seasonings
-Cook on low 6-8 hours. 
You could also use frozen chicken breasts but will need to up either the time or temp. I prefer to cook chicken on low and usually set the timer for 6 hours. My crock-pot switches to a "warm" mode when the time is up, and after a few more hours in the pot, it is usually just right. IF you use less chicken you may want to keep it more to 4-5 hours. Chicken is finicky and will dry out quickly, play around with your pot and find your perfect cook time (just make sure it's fully cooked!)
 If you do not have a timer on your pot & have to leave it on longer, I would add a little more olive oil and definitely use at least a 1/2 cup of either wine or balsamic vinegar AND chicken broth. Instead of pouring it in on top of the peppers, pour it in BEFORE you add them to allow the chicken to soak all the juices up!


You may not really be what you eat, but what you eat can really affect what you are.

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