Cooking, Sewing, Working, Traveling, Gardening and Pondering

Continuous effort - not strength or intelligence - is the key to unlocking our potential.

~Winston Churchill~

Monday, September 30, 2013

Whole Life Challenge

Ever since Sept 5th I've been participating in the Whole Life Challenge.  It's a form of lifestyle change challenge where you sign up to eat clean, be active and track each day.   Mostly, I've done ok.  Missed some workout from a back injury, but I've been able to do small modified workouts at home that count - For example - 3 rounds of 25 squats, 25 push ups, 1 minute planks, 10 lunges.  The goal is a minimum of 10 minutes workout and 10 minutes stretches or mobility.  The stretching is easy for me - I stretch my hamstrings when I blow dry my hair upside down each morning, then at lunch when I'm in the break room microwaving my lunch 2-3 minutes I stretch.  One day someone will catch me in downward dog in front of the microwave...sigh.  Then in the evenings, I spend some time with the foam roller working on my back.  There are 3 levels to the challenge, and I went for the intermediate since I had already gone gluten free. 

Anyway, below is my recipe for Roast Lemon Chicken that I pretty much devoured last night.  It is within my intermediate level of the challenge.
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1 Whole Chicken (4-6 lbs)
zest of one lemon - reserve lemon for stuffing in cavity - cut in half
1 Tablespoon fresh thyme
1 Tablespoon fresh rosemary
3 cloves garlic
1 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
1 teaspoon salt + 1 teaspoon more for topping
1/2 rough chopped onion
4 T. cubed butter
1 C. chicken stock
1 c. white wine
1/4 c. olive oil
I used a mortal and pestle to grind up Zest, thyme, rosemary, garlic and 1 t. salt & pepper until it reaches a paste consistency.
Rinse chicken in water and pat dry with paper towels.
Drizzle olive oil all over chicken.and then rub in the paste all over the chicken.  Reserve a about 1/2 teaspoon of the paste for the cavity.

Put the chicken in a roaster/dutch over on a rack breast up.
Into the cavity stuff the lemon used for zesting (cut in half) - I put one half in first, with two tablespoons butter cubed up, then a little of the paste, then chopped onion, then 2 more tablespoons cubed butter and close with the remaining lemon half.
In the pan pour in chicken stock and white wine - if you have it.
Sprinkle chicken breast side up with remaining salt - I use a french sea salt, but your preferred salt is fine.

Put into a 425 degree oven for 30 minutes.  Then reduce oven to 375 for 1 hour.
Check internal temp at breast or thigh to be 160.  once 160 is done, remove from oven and let rest for 10 minutes. Note - I also baste it with the pan juices two or four or five times during cooking...

Monday, September 16, 2013

Summer Fun

My blog life seems to have been escaping me lately.  I think about it but then look something shiny and off I go.  We've had a busy and fun summer for the most part.  Big block party for fourth of July, ZZ Top Concert, Andrea Boccelli concert, vacations here and there, family visits, the hubs quitting smoking. So it's been fun.

Here are some random pictures from the last few months - sadly, very little crafting has taken place.

Motorcycle trip to Colorado

all that white stuff was snow...burrr

Flat Track Motorcycle Races at the OC Fair

9/11 Memorial and Freedom Towers

ZZ Top

View from my brother's sailboat over on Catalina Island where we sailed and scuba dived.

More Catalina

Spent a few days as guests at the Rocky Mountain Oysters Annual Shoot.

And a little time out at the Annual Swerve N Curve Scooter Rally with the South Bay Scooter Club

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No in any particular order - just random summer fun.  See you in craft land soon now that fall is approaching.