Confession time. I can’t believe I’m writing this but, here goes:
I. Like. Rachael. Ray.
In spite of her obnoxious perkiness. In spite of her Oprah-like tendency to be overly branded and just, well, everywhere. In spite of her stupid sayings: “Yumm-O! Pour some EVOO over those ham sammies!” I mean, gag me, right?
Well, over the last few months I’ve somehow come to like her. In fact, I kind of love her.
If you want to know what I’m doing from 10 to 11 every weekday morning, here’s a good guess: I’m sitting at my little bistro table that doubles as a desk, sipping tea, digesting my breakfast, plugging away on my laptop and chuckling along with Rachael. Yep, it’s become my standard morning TV show. Embarrassing.
But you know what? Her show is actually pretty fun. I love it when they get viewers to test out ridiculous gadgets and then report back. Like the woman talking about how she used a boobie vacuum every day to purportedly make her breasts bigger? That’s comedy gold. And don’t get me started on the swag. I want to go be in her studio audience just to get the free stuff. I swear, the people who go to those tapings must walk out of there with boxes of stuff, for all of the freebies she gives away!
And the food. For every dumb, obvious recipe that she has on there (really? turkey burgers are a “recipe”?), there’s a truly delicious gem. Like the Butternut Squash Lasagna that she had on last fall (which I really need to make again – that was deeeelicious). Or the Greek Chicken or Shrimp with Everything Orzo that was on this morning.
As soon Rach (yes, we’re on a nickname basis) started making this on her show, I knew I’d be making it for dinner tonight. Both lemon and parsley figured prominently – both flavors that I love and the hubster hates. (Seriously, he is so bizarre sometimes. Although I can’t even look at a pickle without gagging, so I guess I can’t judge.)
Anyway, since he was out of town, I immediately took a chicken breast out of the freezer and planned a quick afternoon market trip to pick up some parsley. Which brings me to….
Today’s EAT: Seriously, this was SO delicious and SO healthy and really SO easy.
I modified RR’s recipe as follows:
- I used whole wheat bowtie pasta instead of orzo. I wanted something a little healthier! Really, any smallish pasta – penne, corkscrew, whatever – would work with this recipe.
- I omitted the Kalamata olives. Not on purpose, I just forgot to get them at the store. Oops.
- I omitted the banana peppers. Because – yuck. (See pickle comment above – they are too similar in texture for my liking.)
- I used one small vine-ripened tomato instead of all those cherry tomatoes. Just not the biggest tomato fan.
- I added a generous splash (maybe 1/2C) or white wine to the veggies while they were cooking. It would have been way to dry otherwise (probably because of my tomato substitution)
- I probably tripled or quadrupled the red pepper flakes. Meaning I just dumped a whole bunch in there while the chicken was marinating. I like me some spicy.
Unbelievably simple and delicious! My only complaint is that cooking the chicken made a bit of a mess of one of my pan, with all of the lemon and garlic in there crusting to the surface. I guess I should have used some more, ahem, “EVOO.”
Today’s DRINK: Columbia Crest “Two Vines” Chardonnay:
It’s pretty meh. Don’t think I’d buy it again.
Today’s RUN: Five miles, my usual Hudson River path route, super super easy. I didn’t even bother taking my watch. Ugh…the first run back after vacation is always rough, huh?