Monday, January 15, 2007

Day Off Accomplishments

I had today off of work in observance of MLK* day. My hubby however did not, so I had a full day all to myself for a variety of things on my to-do list.

Seriously, the things I can accomplish in one day as a free woman! First of all I went to bed later, without stress, and woke up early, bright-eyed and bushy-tailed ready to go. It's amazing how the mentality of not going to work changes everything, and I even like my job as far as jobs go.

So I get up before my husband, make coffee, have my raisin brand and clean the house. I'm scrubbing the kitchen, putting in laundry tidy-ing up the living room and powder rooms, etc. I go out for a quick errand for my afternoon projects and stop by the Catholic campus for a half hour run on my way to the grocery store. I'm home in time to put away groceries and eat lunch with my hubby who came home to see me. That afternoon after a warm bubble bath (to catch up on my book) and a shower I managed to continue/finish laundry, clean the bedroom, rearrange some closets, make window treatments for the kitchen and living room windows and begin on the roman shade for the window over the sink, make a delicious lemon-poppy seed bundt cake, and prepare a superb dinner of chicken picatta complete with nice table settings and complimenting wine.

When J called that afternoon and I'd told him I fixed a bundt cake. He asked what else I was doing or had done and I rattled off a few things. His comment (don't we all love them):

"I think you're trying to prove all the wonderful things you could do if you
didn't have to work and could stay at home. "

Am I that transparent?

Here's the scrumptious chicken picatta recipe if anyone is interested. However I cannot give you the lemon-poppy seed bundt cake. If I told you, I'd have to kill you.

1 pound penne rigate
2 Tbsp olive oil
1.25 pounds chicken tenders
salt and pepper
2 Tbsp butter
4 cloves garlic, pressed or minced
2 medium shallots, chopped
2 Tbsp flour
1/2 cup white wine
1/4 cup lemon juice
1 chicken broth or stock
3 Tbsp capers, drained
1/2 cup fresh flat leaf parsley, chopped
Chopped or snipped chives, optional

Bring a large pot of water to boil for penne. Cook according to package directions, then drain, return to pan, cover, and keep warm.
Cut chicken tenders into 1 inch pieces. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add 1 Tbsp oil to the pan. When oil is shimmering, add chicken. Season with salt and pepper, and brown until lightly golden all over, about 5 or 6 minutes. Remove chicken from pan and set aside.
Return pan to stove and reduce heat to medium. Add another Tbsp olive oil, 1 Tbsp butter, the garlic, and the shallots, and sauté 3 minutes. Stir in flour and cook 2 minutes. Whisk in wine, then add chicken stock and lemon juice. Stir in capers and parsley. Bring mixture to a gentle boil, then add remaining 1 Tbsp of butter. Return chicken to the pan and heat through, 1 minute. Add chicken mixture to the pasta, stirring to combine well. Adjust seasoning if necessary. Serve with chives, if desired.

*I'm very excited to have a day off for MLK but it also slightly bothers me that most organizations are not off in observance of President's Day which, in my opinion, should be equally weighted.


Nicole said...

wow. That was a trip down memory lane. I used to be able to have a day like that, B.C. (before Claire) Now a productive day off involves a trip to the grocery store and a load of laundry in between games of Candyland.

JayJenny said...

Wow, I am SO impressed. I wish I'd had Monday off but I'm sure my day would have went like this: wake up late, play with the dogs, dishes and laundry, Y&R w/lunch, a little nap, more laundry and make dinner. Way to spend a productive day my friend!