|Balsamic chicken smothered in roasted peppers.|
When it comes to big change I'm brave. I jump in feet first. In my small and particular universe it's easier to pinch your nose and hurl yourself off the edge than it is to stand there and think about it. That kind of anticipation is excruciating. Give me five minutes to think about all the things that can go wrong and I'll start making lists. And never budge an inch.
So I've learned to develop a social reflex- a Hell yeah, let's do it reflex. And in almost every circumstance this reflex has served me well (and if by some slim chance you need a list of when it has worked for me and when it has not, I've got it, filed away in my pictorial little brain).
It's the small day to day changes that can set me spinning.
The blips in routine. The interruptions of flow. The tiny changes that evolve over time into articulate curves on a chart. See this dot? This is where we used to be. See this dot? This is where we are now.
I struggle so intently on orchestrating my string of moments into some semblance of coherent awareness that within each moment I live so completely I fail to see the bigger sprawling truth. The truth that often blindsides me. I wake up to it like a child from a nap, rubbing my eyes and trying to center my bearings. I look at my aging hands and think, Whose hands are these?
I open the door to the blinding bright desert and realize I am not Georgia O'Keeffe, the weathered austere heroine in the books I devoured. I am not madly in love with the emptiness and isolation here. It does not inspire me. It steals from me. Tiny pieces day after day. The desert gnaws at me. It will leave nothing but bleached white bones. And a hip with three titanium screws.
I am trying not to feel as if I've failed somehow. Failed the desert. Or rather, some Georgia O'Keeffe fueled romantic idea of the desert. But the brittle, honest truth is- the desert does not feed me.
Karina's three year course in desert living: F
It's a good thing I can cook.
Karina's Easy Chicken and Balsamic Peppers Recipe
4 large ripe bell peppers: red, green, orange, yellow; cored and sliced thin
1 large sweet onion, sliced thin
1/3 cup organic balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon gluten-free Worcestershire Sauce
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup or so chicken broth
6 fresh cloves of garlic, chopped
1 tablespoon dried basil
1/2 teaspoon thyme
1/2 teaspoon rosemary
4 fresh, organic free-range split breasts of chicken, rinsed and patted dry
Sea salt and ground pepper, to taste
Preheat oven to 375ºF. Toss the pepper and onion slices in a large bowl. In a large measuring cup, fork-stir your sauce using: balsamic vinegar, Worcestershire, olive oil, broth, chopped garlic, and herbs. Pour the sauce over the sliced peppers and onions and toss well to coat.
Place the split chicken breasts in the bottom of a baking pan sprayed with olive oil. Season with sea salt and pepper, to taste. Pour the balsamic pepper mixture over the chicken and arrange them evenly. Use every last drop of sauce.
Loosely cover the pan with a piece of foil and place in the center of a pre-heated oven. Bake for 20 minutes. Spoon the sauce all over the peppers and chicken breasts to keep everything happy and moist, recover it and continue to bake until everything is melt-in-your-mouth tender (depending upon the thickness of the chicken, and the size of your pepper strips, and your particular oven and altitude it could be an additional 10 minutes or 20 minutes). You want the chicken to be cooked through (no longer pink inside) and the peppers to be limp and soft.
Serve with a side dish of cooked rice or quinoa, brown rice pasta tossed in pesto, or creamy mashed potatoes, and crisp baby greens on the side.
Recipe Source: glutenfreegoddess.blogspot.com
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