I’m a huge fan of Trader Joe’s. I love the cookies. They have a pretty great beer selection. Their produce selection is good, and the prices are decent. Of course, everything has to be consumed in less than 24 hours or else it goes bad. But hey, it’s Trader Joe’s.
We’ve tried a few of the premixed bags of veggies (slaws, salads and such), and rely on the premade salads and wraps as a healthier option for quarantine work day lunches. During the last shopping trip, in addition to our normal haul of yogurt, salads, and a hunk of their delicious Pugliese, my wife also grabbed a bag labeled “Miso Vegetable Brown Rice Saute Kit” and a small package of chicken, thinking it would be an easy meal that I could hack together.
It was, and I could.
The kit itself is a bag of veggies – mostly kale, with some shaved brussels sprouts, broccoli, carrots and red cabbage – with a small block of parboiled brown rice, and a little packet of miso dressing. Had I made it alone, it would not have been a filling meal – at least for me. In addition, I would have chosen to add some spice and soy sauce, as I found the miso mixture a little bland for my taste, though it did prove to be a good base for my hacked-together dinner. With the addition of some marinated chicken breast and scrambled soy-seasoned eggs, this kit turned out to be a good one to take a chance on, especially since it only cost a couple of dollars!
I recommend you try it out for yourself, and if you’d like to kick it up a notch, follow the ingredient list and instructions below to turn the premade kit into a tasty stir-fry.
- Chicken breast (cut into 1/2 inch cubes)
- 2 cloves garlic (minced)
- 1 inch fresh ginger (peeled and diced)
- 1 tbsp. sesame oil
- 2 tbsp. soy sauce
- 1 tbsp. honey
- vegetable oil
- salt and pepper
- 3 eggs (beaten, with a splash of soy sauce)
- Trader Joe’s Miso Vegetable and Brown Rice Sauté Kit
- Cube the chicken, and toss it with the garlic, ginger, soy sauce, sesame oil, honey, and a pinch of salt and pepper. Crack the eggs into bowl, and whip them with a splash (a teaspoon or less) of soy sauce.
- Place a large pan over medium-high heat, and preheat a tablespoon of vegetable oil.
- Note: With Asian flavors, you should default to veggie or canola oil rather than olive oil, which is slightly heavier, burns at a lower temperature, and imparts a distinct flavor into the food.
- Add the chicken to the pan (careful, it’ll be splattery) and stir-fry the chunks until they cook through and start to brown. This will probably take about 8 minutes. If you want to be more careful, use tongs and turn the pieces to make sure the chunks cook evenly.
- Remove the chicken to a plate or bowl, leave any remaining bits of garlic and ginger, and add another dollop of oil into the pan. Let it preheat for a bit ( a minute or less).
- Add the eggs into the pan, and give them a quick scramble, cooking the eggs into small to medium-sized curds. This should only take a minute or two, and when they’re done, remove them to the plate with the chicken.
- Now cook the sauté kit according to the package directions:
- Add oil to the pan (it’s all good if there are some remnants from the previous steps; it’s all flavor), and sauté the veggies for 3 minutes. The kale will start to cook down, and everything will get all bright and shiny.
- Add the weird brick of parboiled rice to the veggies, and sauté for 2 minutes. I had to use my spatula to break up the chunks of rice as I stirred it.
- Remove the pan from the heat, add the packet of miso dressing (sauce?), and toss it all together.
- Toss in the chicken and eggs that you set aside, and mix it up well. At this point you probably want to give it a try, and season it to your own taste. I ended up adding another splash of soy sauce, a dab of sesame oil, and a bit of pepper.
- Serve it up with some sriracha, or accoutrements (a fancy word for “extra shit to make it tasty”) of your choice, and enjoy!