Salsa chicken disaster.

Homigawd I am starving. The prunes I’m munching on are not cutting it either. (Yes, I happen to like prunes. No, I’m not 80.) I’m watching Arrested Development while I wait for my dinner to hurry up and finish cooking.

BEST.SHOW.EVER. Seen it? If you haven’t you really need to put this on your Netflix queue right away. I have been known to bust out the chicken during random events. And may have *almost* fallen into a fire once.

(source)

This weekend the lovely Anastasia informed me the Arrested Development movie is definitely on! I will be in the theater opening day, thank you very much.

Anyway…

The hubs opted to take the bus to work this morning (*thanks hubs!), so I wouldn’t have to deal with an extra early morning work out, driving back home, driving him to work and then driving myself to work. Just writing that sentence made me exhausted.

I really hate driving. I think it all started when I got in an accident four days after I got my license. My mom was napping and I interrupted her slumber to ask if I could borrow her car to meet my friend for lunch. After lunch I was attempting to drop my friend off at work and I pulled into a parking spot. Unfortunately my foot slipped off the brake and slammed onto the gas and I went flying over the divider between Burger King and Big O Tires. I hit another vehicle and their back end looked like my front end. It wound up costing my insurance company a pretty penny, (my bill went up before I even received the first statement in the mail), and I was scarred for life. Now I pretty much refuse to drive unless I have to. Or if there is a sale I need to scope out.

But I digress. This morning I hit the gym for my Tuesday run walk/jog. I decided my unofficial training plan would include a jog on the ol dreadmill Tuesday and Thursday mornings, and attempt an outdoor run once on the weekend. The couch to 5k program has never worked for me, so I am just making this plan up as I go. So far so good, except for the fact that I was still to Sudafeded-up to really have a good work out. After a half hour I jumped off the dreadmill to work my legs instead.

Brekkie was same ol, same ol oats (blueberry craisins, cinnamon, chia seeds, almond milk/water) and coffee…which tasted like an ash tray? Gross. Once we are out of this Kirkland House Blend I am going to be on a mission to find something locally roasted.

Are you bored with my breakfasts lately? I am.

Lunch was a repeat of last nights dinner: taco salad (turkey taco meat, bell pepper, tomato, red onion, homemade salsa, homemade guac and some colby jack cheese).

I snacked on a sad looking nanner w/decaf chia tea + ff half&half (finally threw out that nasty caramel macchiatto coffee creamer!)

I swung downtown to pick up the hubs and threw dinner in the oven: salsa chicken. We have SO MUCH salsa to use up this week! So last night I threw 3 large (Costco size) chicken breasts in a bag with 2 cups of salsa (half medium, half spicy). Tonight I threw it in a pyrex dish and into the oven it went…an hour ago. Usually this dish only takes a half hour. But due to the size of my breasts the dish took double the amount of time to bake.

What, you don’t like tasteless jokes?

Tada, by the time I finished writing this post dinner was magically ready. Ask and you shall receive I guess. Salsa chicken w/leftover cheesy rice.

I’m still starving though so I may dig into this (salted caramel chocolate!),

or this cookie a student decorated for me 🙂

Yes, I do go girl.

Santa Fe Chicken

Santa Fe Chicken a la crock pot

I love, love, love my crock pot! I mean, how much easier can cooking get? Throw ingredients in pot, turn nob, let sit a few hours and enjoy. Simple, simple.* I only have a few rules when making a crock pot meal: no browning or sautéing anything prior to cooking. Okay, I guess I only have one rule. The beauty of a crock pot is that meals made in it only require it to do the cooking. Why mess with a good thing by creating more dishes to wash?

*I really wanted to do a fun rhyme like easy peasy. But the only thing I could think of to rhyme with simple was pimple, and that doesn’t make you want to eat this meal.

So the other day when my friend Mandy’s facebook status inquired about favorite crock pot recipes I responded with Gina’s Crock Pot Santa Fe Chicken. While it is pretty darn tasty, I wanted to mess with it a bit to clean out my veggie drawer.

Enter Leila’s Santa Fe Chicken, inspired by this recipe.

Nutritionals (for 1/8th of recipe) Cal: 269, Carb: 28, Fat: 3, Pro:32

Ingredients

3 large chicken breasts (nutritionals from 26 ounces of chicken)

2 cups chopped onion (I used a blend of sweet and red)

1 large bell pepper, chopped (any color but green)

6 garlic cloves, minced

15 ounce can black beans, rinsed and drained

10 ounce bag frozen corn

14.4 ounce can diced tomatoes

2 tsp. ground cumin

1.5 tsp. cayenne pepper

1 tsp. black pepper

2 cups (or 14.4 ounce can) chicken broth

Salt to taste

Well hello my friends, what  a delightful and colorful bunch you are.

Directions

Throw all ingredients, but chicken, into crock pot. Stir to combine.

Nestle chicken breasts into the mix.

Cook on low for 10 hours, or high for 6 hours.

Enjoy over rice or quinoa.

Lemony Chicken w/Spinach and Mushroom Orzo

After cleaning up the kitchen I had a strong desire to cook a real meal. While we have quite a few leftovers, I figured, meh, I’ll save those for tomorrow. Tonight I wanted something really tasty.

Say hello to my little friend, Lemony Chicken

And his sidekick, Spinach and Mushroom Orzo

They make a cute couple.

Sadly the brussel sprouts were a burnt-out third wheel, trying to crash the party.

They started rather pretty…

But were roasted a tad too long per Food Network’s instructions.

Bad Food Network, bad!

But, ya know, sprinkle em with enough sea salt and they were tolerable.

Lemony Chicken

Adapted from this recipe.

Serves 2-4

Ingredients

1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper

2 tsp. garlic powder
2 tsp. dried basil

2-4 Boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (defrosted if frozen)
1 TBS extra-virgin olive oil
Juice from one lemon
1 TBS butter
1 tsp honey

1/3 cup dry white wine* (or chicken broth)

1/3 cup cilantro, diced

*Rule of thumb: if you wouldn’t drink it, don’t cook with it.

Directions

Combine the flour, salt, pepper, basil and garlic powder in a shallow dish and set aside.

Place the chicken breasts, one at a time, between 2 sheets of wax paper or place all chicken breasts in large freezer bag (sealed). Pound the breasts with several whacks of a meat mallet (can roll with rolling pin if you do not have a meat mallet) so they are an even 1/2-inch thick. Peel off the paper, or remove from bag.

Heat oil in a 12-inch nonstick skillet over high heat. Meanwhile, dip the chicken pieces into the flour mixture to coat on both sides, shaking off any excess. Add the pieces to the skillet and cook until lightly browned, about 2 minutes.

While the chicken cooks, cut the lemon and squeeze the juice into a small bowl (picking out any seeds that fall in) and set aside.

Turn the chicken and saute until lightly browned and cooked through, another 2 minutes.

Remove the chicken to a platter.

Add the butter to the skillet and reduce the heat to low. When the butter is melted, add wine (or chicken broth).

Remove from the heat and stir in the lemon juice, cilantro and honey. Immediately drizzle the lemon mixture over the chicken.

Spinach and Mushroom Orzo

Serves 4

Ingredients

4 cups liquid (I prefer chicken broth, but you can use water too, or a mixture of the two)

1 1/3 cup orzo

4 mushrooms, diced

2 handfuls spinach, chopped

1/4 tsp. black pepper

Directions

Bring chicken broth/water to a boil. Add diced mushrooms, black pepper and orzo. Cook for 8 minutes. Add spinach and cook an additional 4 minutes. Drain excess liquid in colander and return to pot.

Off to prep my gym bag and food for tomorrow. Back to work, back to work.