It’s that time of year…the sun is out, the temperature is rising, things turn from brown to green and I make a few changes to my lifestyle. I’m also job hunting, so to clear my head and make better food choices, I am trying to limit (avoid) starches, like pasta, bread, rice, potatoes and all things fried. So there is that, plus, the hubbs and I are on a new regimen, a daily walk around the track. He’s way better at staying motivated, I’d rather be blogging or playing pretend buyer for my friends online clothing boutique. The only food exception will be Friday night family pizza & movie nights; I simply cannot give up my ‘za. And then there is the occasional lunch or dinner out, where I have to keep my snacking and temptations to a minimum, like the bites of flavored toasts from Life & Honey; Avocado & Mango, BlackBean Salsa and Chocolate Delight. OMG. SO good. Check them out next time you are out in Chantilly/Aldie area. Sometimes you fall off the motivation train, but you just need to get back on it and see how long you can hang on. For now, I’m on!
A great option to resisting all of the above is roasting. Veggies, chicken, fish, etc. A few easy and inexpensive ingredients and you are done. Most of the time, I buy an already roasted chicken, but when I’m feeling it, I’ll just pluck one out of the market for $5-7 and do it myself. This way, I can put the flavors in that I love most (rosemary, thyme, lemon, etc.) and let the house percolate with the best smells. Alongside the chicken tonight, I chose roasted carrots & broccoli florets, and a steam roasted artichoke. If you guys could smell my kitchen right now…
Whole Chicken (5 lbs) – remove giblets, rinse with water, pat dry
2 stalks celery
few springs rosemary
salt & pepper
sliced carrots (5-6)
1 head of broccoli – cut stalks off into florets
1/4 tab of butter
Oven to 350 degrees; use a large baking dish, place chicken breast up, stuff cavity with lemons, onion, rosemary, celery; rub skin with a little olive oil, salt & pepper, sprinkle thyme on top. Put cut carrots in, top with a few tabs of butter, salt & pepper – put in oven and roast for 60 minutes.
In meantime, take the artichoke, put on a large piece of tin foil, open up leaves a little, toss some salt & pepper, a tiny bit of olive oil and garlic over top. Wrap up, stick in same oven. This will cook perfectly!
After an hour, remove the chicken from oven; take the carrots out of the baking dish, mix in with the florets onto a rimmed baking tray, pour in the juice from the chicken, add a few more tabs of butter and put back in oven for 20-30 minutes. I like my veggies a little less mushy, so 20 minutes is plenty for me. I also put the chicken back in the oven until it’s perfectly golden brown.
When everything looks (browned skin) and tastes right (veggies), pull everything out of oven: chicken, veggies & artichoke. Slice up your chicken, side of veggies and peel back the tin foil, and enjoy that artichoke!
DONE & ENJOY!