coconut cashew chicken tenders
Ever have one of those moments where you refuse to give up something as good as say, chicken tenders? In our house, we have had to eliminate a record number of foods over the past 5 years (since diagnosis). And we are better for it. Our guts are stronger. We are healthier. The tough part? We are still working on it. Being healthy and strong doesn’t happen overnight. It happens one meal at a time. One day at a time. One thing is for sure, it certainly hasn’t been the easiest road. We’ve hit some bumps along the way but we are committed to making every single bite count nutritionally speaking. In our house, we try not to talk about the food we can’t eat. Instead, we celebrate the hundreds of things we CAN eat. As such, I am constantly reevaluating, reassessing, reinventing recipes that suit our current dietary concerns. Necessity is the mother of invention, right?
Speaking about new things on the block , there’s a recently-launched website to tell you about. It’s called The Balanced Platter (TBP) and it serves as a one-stop shop for balanced, healthy gluten-free living. The site will offer ideas from your favorite gluten free bloggers about how to live well on a gluten-free diet – anything from recipes to tips, from how-to’s to product reviews.
The site is the brainchild of Amy Green of Simply Sugar and Gluten-free and Maggie Savage of She Let Them Eat Cake. Throughout the year, perhaps you’ll even see guests posts over that way from yours truly. In the meantime, however, Amy and Maggie are kicking off their new site in style. Each day in January, a different gluten free blogger will be posting/sharing a healthy gluten free recipe. For a complete list of who is posting when, please click here. You can also find TBP on Facebook or by following @balancedplatter on Twitter. As a celebratory round-up, TBP will be giving away a baking gift pack to one lucky reader on February 1st. Many thanks to Amy and Maggie!
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No matter the main course, we try to have a side of greens with our dinner each day. We’ll take all the calcium we can get. If we’re having a salad, I typically incorporate a combination of three kinds of lettuce, depending on the season. I almost always sneak in some kale ribbons (kale leaves stacked, halved lengthwise, then sliced cross-wise super thinly). This cancer fighting vegetable is pretty nutrient dense. Did you know one cup of kale has more calcium than one cup of milk? It’s great for your liver too. Much to my surprise, all three of my children actually eat salad made with kale ribbons in it. Which makes me a happy mama. Both coconut and kale are warming foods – perfect for this time of year. Even though the coconut is unsweetened, it has an ever-so-slight sweetness to it. They gobbled these tenders right up. Start to finish, you could have this meal on your plate in 30 minutes. Perfect for a busy weeknight.
coconut cashew chicken tenders
3-4 organic chicken breasts
1 1/4 cups raw cashews (unsalted)
1 1/4 cups unsweetened shredded coconut (I used Let’s Do Organic)
1 tsp sea salt (I use Real Salt)
1.) Preheat the oven to 425 degrees and line your baking sheet with parchment paper.
2.) Place one chicken breast between 2 pieces of parchment paper. Using a meat tenderizer (mine is still in a box somewhere since our move 6 months ag0 – - so I just used the side of a pint glass) pound the chicken to a thickness of 1/3 inch. Repeat this step for each chicken breast.
3.) Cut each chicken breast into 2 inch strips (for each breast, you’ll likely have on/about 4 tenders).
4.) In the bowl of a food processor fitted with an “S” blade, place the coconut, cashews and salt. Process for about 20 seconds, until the mixture resembles large crumbs. Transfer mixture to a shallow plate/dish.
5.) Using a fork, press to coat each tender entirely with coconut/cashew mixture. Flip onto other side and press to coat there too. Transfer to baking sheet.
6.) Bake for 8 minutes. Remove from the oven. Using tongs or a clean fork, flip the tenders over and bake another 9-10 minutes.