The theme for our recent Aquilino Cancer Center cooking class was nuts. Nuts provide many health benefits. They are a great source of unsaturated fats, phytosterols (plant-derived compound structurally related to cholesterol) and fiber. They also offer vitamins and minerals. People who eat nuts also tend to weigh less, possibly because nuts enhance satiety or suppress hunger.

Cashews, in particular, are a good source of zinc and iron. With Chicken & Broccoli Stir-Fry with Cashews, there is no need to order take out. This delicious family recipe provides protein, vegetables, and nuts all in one easy dish. The recipe calls for tamari, which is an aged soy sauce prepared with little or no added wheat. Look for low-sodium tamari. It also comes in gluten-free varieties for those following a specialized meal plan.

Ingredients:

  • Juice of 1 lime
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • 4 organic skinless, boneless chicken thighs, cut into bite-size pieces
  • 2 tsp kudzu root powder
  • ¼ cup cold water
  • ½ cup tamari*
  • ¼ cup water
  • 2 Tbsp. maple syrup
  • 2 ½ Tbsp. finely squeezed lime juice
  • 2 Tbsp. brown rice vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp. minced garlic
  • 1 Tbsp. minced fresh ginger
  • Pinch of cayenne
  • 1 tsp toasted sesame oil
  • ½ pound broccoli
  • 2 Tbsp. light sesame oil
  • ½ cup toasted cashews

Preparation:

  1. Stir lime juice and salt together. Add the chicken to the blend and marinate for 2 minutes in the refrigerator.
  2. Whisk the kudzu with ¼ cup cold water until completely dissolved, making slurry.
  3. Stir the tamari, ¼ cup water, maple syrup, lime juice, vinegar, 2 tsp of the garlic, 2 tsp of the ginger and the cayenne together in a small saucepan over medium-high heat and bring to a boil.
  4. Lower the heat and simmer, uncovered until the sauce begins to thicken and is reduced in volume by 1/3; about 4 minutes.
  5. Stir in the slurry while whisking continuously. Then stir in the toasted sesame oil and remove from heat.
  6. Meanwhile, cut the broccoli florets into bite-size pieces. Trim and peel the stems and cut them into bite-size pieces as well; keeping them separate from the florets.
  7. Heat wok or large heavy sauté pan over high heat for 2 minutes. Add the light sesame oil and swirl to coat the pan. Add the remaining 1 tsp each of garlic and ginger and stir-fry for 1-2 minutes, until aromatic.
  8. Stir in the chicken and toss/stir constantly for 2 minutes. Add the broccoli stalks and stir-fry until bright green, then add the broccoli florets and continue to stir-fry for ~ 2minutes.
  9. Pour in the sauce and stir-fry for another 30 seconds, tossing constantly.
  10. Serve immediately, garnished with cashews.

Source: The Cancer Fighting Kitchen by Rebecca Katz

Nutrition Facts: Serves 6, Calories: 250, Fat: 13grams, Carbohydrates: 24 grams, Protein: 13 grams, Fiber: 1 gram, Sodium: 415mg