October 20, 2008

pushing the envelope

apparently, i am still alive. and i still like to blog. and fortunately, i can still cook.

at work today i sighed as i pulled the single serving carton of Pacific butternut squash soup out of my desk drawer. i was heartily sick of the flavor due to overconsumption, but bound and determined not to pay a pricey visit to the overfrequented but vastly convenient deli downstairs. why didn't i have any lunch to bring to work? oh yeah, no leftovers.

the last month or two has found me practically a stranger to the kitchen, whether from lack of time/money/groceries/energy or just plain absence from home and more enticing dinner invitations elsewhere.

and what food tempted me tonight to pull out the pots and pans, search through the pantry and dig out the freezer?


oh, and mushrooms.

throw in a little chicken (floured and into a hot pan) and voila! my own hybrid rendition of chicken picatta. sure, i didn't have asparagus or artichoke hearts (prominent players in my favorite restaurant version), but after combing several different sites for chicken picatta and italian lemon butter chicken, i took a deep breath and dived right in.

i think if i'd thought about it a little longer, i would've been intimidated and probably chickened out. probably.

because baking is a precise science and my preferred from of culinary expression, i am most comfortable following a recipe to a T. deciding to improvise my own recipe by combining what sounded best out of the 3 recipes i found tonight? living on the edge!

it could've been disastrous--having never made my own floured chicken cutlets, or a cream sauce more complicated than a roux, i also realized half way through that i didn't have all of the ingredients each of the recipes called for. bacon? nope, but i didn't really want it. fresh lemon juice? no lemon--but i did have some lemon juice. no white wine? hopefully the little carton of chicken stock i had in the pantry would do in a pinch. i'm putting HOW much butter into my lemon cream butter sauce? *gulp* so much for eating healthy tonight. definitely didn't think this one through.

one intense but satisfying and informative hour later, i had a beautiful entree i was proud of. and it was delicious. i even have enough leftovers for lunch tomorrow.

next project? dust off those running shoes!


The Mortensens said...

You should start posting pictures of your delicious sounding creations!

Maria and Ryan said...

i love it! you should blog the recipe so the rest of us can savor your yummy dish.

i am absolutely NO cook, but I was frustrated by a few recipes the other day and decided to just mesh them all together. I'm happy to report it was actually decent. but I was so sure I had just wasted a bunch of money and ingredients on perfectly good pork chops, so it was quite the surprise when even Ryan liked it.

i will probably not be doing that too often though, because i really don't have the cooking gene, or genius...so i'll just have to rely on those that do (like you) to supply me with their successes :-)

p.s. don't worry, I won't make you cook when you come to my house...unless you want to...(wink).

Shanna said...

wanna come to Cleveland and cook for us? I am pregnant again and the smell of meat is too much for me. Plus, I miss you and would love to have you come visit Aaron and me!

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