Monday, March 30, 2009

Martha Moment: Maple-Roasted Chicken with Sweet Potatoes

Ever have one of those moments in time where your domestic effort comes together so beautifully and perfectly you feel like Martha Stewart? Last night's dinner made me feel like Martha. I present to you:
Maple Roasted Sweet Potatoes over Brown Rice with Green Beans with Almonds
I've been yearning for this chicken dish since I saw in in the Feb '09 issue of Real Simple. I made it in the crock pot, however, instead of roasted it in the oven for 1 hour and 40 minutes.
2 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks
1 onion cut into 1-inch wedges
6 sprigs fresh thyme (I used dried)
2 tablespoons of olive oil
salt & pepper
1 3½-4 lb chicken cut into 8 pieces (I used only 3 large breasts)
3 tablespoons maple syrup
After browning the chicken briefly, I placed it in the crockpot. In a medium bowl, I tossed the sweet potatoes and onions with the salt, pepper, thyme and olive oil then dumped them on top. Drizzle the maple syrup over all, cover and cook til done.
About 25 minutes before serving, I made the brown rice and served the chicken and potatoes on top of it. The green beans were frozen, sauteed with olive oil til crisp tender with a little basil and a bag of sliced almonds left over from a Wendy's salad--fake green bean almondine on the quick. Delicious, filling, and leftover lunches for three and cost approx. $7.50 for everything.
I still feel so very Martha ......

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Real Thai

Bad Thai ------- Good Thai

Oh what a world of difference! Until last night, the "Bad Thai" was the only Thai I had ever eaten before. And that was only purchased to add interest to the camping menu!

Mr B. and I went to the new Thai restaurant , the only one in our rural part of the world. What a wonderous treat!

Mr B. had the Pad Thai noodles:
I had the Red Curry and Rice

I am madly in love with the subtle complexeties of flavoring. Each bite showers the palate with taste sensations: citrus, coconut, curry, chili, ginger, garlic, basils, sweet, spicy. The appetizers were delicate spring rolls and a lovely cucumber sauce that was Mama the Cook's own recipe. I could make a meal off that alone but then would deprive myself of the treat of gorging on all the other great stuff!
A return visit is a must. Granted, the budget won't allow for that kind of eating out often, so I may have to look for some coconut milk and recipes and start learning. Mmmmm practice is half the fun.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

It's been kind of a funky last two weeks here on Bittersweet Lane. Both Mr. B and I have had emotionally draining turmoil in our workplaces but both places seem to be settling down (or we're aclimating to it). Kiddo 3 has been stressing over several papers for her college classes especially the one where she has to interview the owner of a hotel/motel that houses sex offenders (in a seedy part of town, of course). She was accompanied by a classmate. Kiddo 4 is struggling to write papers for his Senior Portfolio, necessary for graduation. He has a very dry, sardonic sense of humor (can't imagine where he gets it from) and is guarded about his emotions. Unfortunately, the teacher doesn't get the humor and has some kind of Lifetime-movie notion of reaching each child's emotional core, exposing it and saving/reforming/tranforming them. That is so not going to happen with this Aspy.

I was checking out favorite blogs this morning, and was amazed at Hip to Save's shopping trip to Walgreen's this week here. Isn;t she amazing!!

On the happy things front, my sewing machine is is happily purring away. After a monthlong hiatus, I finally got the sewing mojo back.

I'm working on Simplicity 4366, view B, the lower righthand photo, in a dark navy blue microfiber. It feels so good to sew again. That creative process is so restorative to my emotional well-being and keeps the closet stocked, too.