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Oh, the weather outside is frightful, but the dinner is so delightful

I came across this recipe in an issue of Runner’s World a couple of years ago. Because this dish is colorful, fairly simple, and very tasty, it’s now a go-to recipe in my kitchen. It’s full of complete proteins along with healthy carbs and fats. The athlete who waxed positive about this recipe was Nick Symmonds. He has run the 800 meters distance in the Olympics. So this is clearly a man who knows how proper fuels translate to athletic success.

Nick’s Red Beans and Rice With Turkey Sausage

5 cups chicken stock
2 cups brown rice (long-grain, not instant)
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
2 onions, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 pound smoked turkey sausage, cut into 1/2-inch coins
2 15-oz cans kidney beans
1 15-oz can diced tomatoes
1 teaspoon thyme
1 bay leaf
Ground black pepper to taste
Hot pepper sauce to taste

1. Combine the rice and chicken stock in a large pot. Bring to a boil. Cover the pot and let simmer until stock is absorbed, approximately 40 minutes.

2. Heat the oil in a large pan. Saute peppers, onions, and garlic until softened. Add sausage and saute until brown.

3. Add beans and one cup of bean liquid, diced tomatoes with juice, thyme, and bay leaf. Simmer uncovered for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Season with pepper and hot sauce. Combine rice and bean mixture. Remove bay leaf.

Serves six.

Tips: Don’t be afraid to deviate from the recipe. For example, if you don’t have stock but you want to use water, that will work. If you have two green peppers or you want to throw in a handful of okra, that still works. Organic beans generally have less sodium than nonorganic beans. Using low-sodium diced tomoatoes will even further reduce your sodium consumption.

This makes a very large amount. Use your biggest pot to combine the rice to the beans and sausage mixture.

Keep in mind that good abs are made in the kitchen and not just in the workout studio!

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