One of the reasons I like to cook mostly healthy food is so I can justify the occasional dish like this one.
Omu raisu (rice omelet) is one of the most popular dishes in Japan, both at home and in restaurants. To Western ears it doesn't sound immediately compelling -- lightly fried rice laced with ketchup and covered with a sheet of runny eggs. It's slathered with more ketchup to finish, which is probably why I jumped on the bandwagon almost immediately and have never looked back. My childhood recollections don't include any warm and fuzzy comfort dishes, so when I feel down and out or just need some food love, this is the dish I invariably turn to.
It’s taco Tuesday! Or any day! Who wouldn’t overuse exclamation points?! I loved taco night when I was a kid, when it meant yellow cheese, seasonings from a packet, and machine-molded tortilla shells—essentially, an insult to all of Mexico in one convenient box. It is, of course, better to make real tacos with sweet fresh flour tortillas.
This is absolutely one of my fallback dishes for entertaining families when I don't know how finicky the kids' palates are. My kids usually eat the grown-up version but occasionally one of them has a relapse of sorts and declares the sauce (which he loved the week prior) to be unfit for human consumption. Suddenly the simplified version of chicken breasts and rice or potatoes with no sauce is all he will touch. This is exactly the kind of flexible option that doesn't make the cook (aka you) nuts and vaguely irritated since you will make one dish, just one, that allows the blander eaters to enjoy the meal without rendering the adults bored out of their skulls.
Essentially a lasagna with tortillas standing in for noodles, this is one of those dishes that can miraculously be on the table in short order, made from things you most likely have in your pantry and fridge. If you don't like, or you don't have, one of the ingredients, skip it. Or, if you have something else that you think might be appealing all layered in (like slivered bell peppers to sauté with the onions, kale, chopped, cooked broccoli — whatever the people in your home will eat), then fling it on in.
We devised this simple recipe in order to encourage our daughters to get used to eating green-colored food. Both of them still love this dish, even though they both eventually graduated to other green vegetables.
Place 2-3 chicken balls on a small skewer or toothpick, then sprinkle on the Japanese red pepper powder, if using, and serve.
With "squiggly" noodles and tomato, this is a gem of a kid's pasta. And it has a sneaky side - they will eat beans without even thinking about it.