That horrible wailing you hear is the sound of many children and teachers crying because school has started.  Summer is over.  Poot.

In my district, teachers actually went to work a little over a week ago.  Kids started yesterday.

I love the beginning of school. It’s a fresh start.  A new beginning.  School is sweet faces and new uniforms and bags of school supplies and fresh haircuts and new shoes.

But I am tired.

Yesterday, I got home around 5:30 after picking Elizabeth up from powerlifting practice and I was so tired, I didn’t even want to think about cooking dinner.  I wanted to fall asleep in a hot bubble bath, wake and crawl into bed, and sleep until the next morning.  But there are these people who live with me who expect me to cook and help with homework and speak whole sentences to them.  I was so relieved to find a bag of chicken tenders in the freezer.  I cooked those and served them to my kids.  Did I serve them with anything?  Yes.  Ranch dressing.  I did open a can of jalapeno black-eyed peas and heat it in the microwave for Michael.  I didn’t even eat.  I just sat quietly on the couch until it seemed polite to slither down the hall and pass out in my bed.

Today was a better day.  I wasn’t quite as tired. I picked up Elizabeth from the gym and headed home.  I wanted to cook, but I really didn’t want to be on my feet for a long time.  This meal was perfect.  Twenty minutes from start to finish!  And it is delicious!

Quick Cashew Chicken

  • 2-3 cooked chicken breasts, cubed
  • Olive oil
  • 1 baseball-sized onion, chopped
  • 2 19-ounce bags of cut broccoli, steamed
  • 1 8-ounce can of sliced water chestnuts, drained
  • 1-2 cups of cashew halves or pieces
  • 2 cups of soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup of chicken or vegetable stock
  • 1/2 cup of brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon of garlic paste – or a clove, finely minced
  • 2 tablespoons of ginger paste or minced ginger
  • 2 teaspoons of sesame oil
  • 4 teaspoons of corn starch

In a large skillet, drizzle olive oil and sautee onion until tender.  While onion is cooking, steam the broccoli in the microwave.

During this time, in a medium bowl, mix the sauce.  Add soy sauce, stock, brown sugar, garlic, ginger, sesame oil, and corn starch.  Whisk together until combined.

Add cubed, cooked chicken, broccoli and water chestnuts to the onions in the skillet and stir to combine.  Pour in the cashews.  Pour the sauce into the skillet and stir to coat.  Simmer over high heat until sauce thickens.

Serve over rice or steamed, riced cauliflower.

Well Duh #1:  I used bags of Birdseye family-sized Steamfresh Broccoli Cuts.  You steam it in the bag in the microwave.  For two bags, I cooked them on high for about 8 minutes.

Well Duh #2:  If broccoli isn’t your thing, use whatever veggies float your boat.  Cooking times may change a bit.

Well Duh #3:  The kids had this over white rice.  Michael had his over steamed, riced cauliflower.

The tribe loved this dish!  They ate it up!  Just as I finished cooking, I realized that we were out of dog food, so I had to run to Walmart.  When I came back home, I found that someone had eaten ALL of the Cashew Chicken!!  All of it!

This is what I had for dinner.  Plain, white rice with a little butter.

How sad is that?  Next time, I’m eating before I even tell them it’s ready!