Archive for March, 2014

In the summer I LOVE to make Beer-can chicken on the grill, but in the winter I don’t use the grill much. But, I still love having a whole chicken to feed the family. So, instead of grilling I roast it. We eat 90% paleo, but this recipe works whether you are paleo or not. Here is a very simple way to make to make an incredible wholesome dinner for your family. If you have never roasted a whole chicken before, please don’t be intimidated. It’s really not that hard. You can do it!!

First, assemble your ingredients.
-Whole chicken, remove the giblets
-Fresh thyme
-Carrots, celery (as base under chicken)
-Salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika
-Olive oil

prep pic

Next, pat chicken dry with a paper towel and place on top of carrots, celery, 1/2 onion roughly chopped, and few sprigs thyme in your roasting pan. Season inside of bird cavity with salt and pepper, and then stuff with lemon (quartered), 1/2 onion (chopped), garlic (smashed, approx. 2-3 cloves), and few sprigs thyme.


stuffed chicken

Loosen the skin away from the breast meat and season between. Drizzle the top of bird with olive oil and then season very well. Don’t be shy! You don’t want a bland bird.

chicken pre cook

Roast in a 350 degree oven 20 mins. per pound and then another 15 mins. I did mine for an hour and 40 mins. uncovered. Let it rest for at least 15 mins. before you cut into it. If you don’t have an instant read thermometer, I highly recommend it. You will do less over-cooking if you have one. Chicken should be cooked to 165.

final chicken

So, stinking, delicious. I am going to serve mine tonight with roasted Brussels sprouts and sweet potatoes.

Mommy Monster

I wake up in the morningIMG_6468
With my normal mommy-ness
You turn me into something else
When I see the giant mess

I plan to be a good girl
With no yelling and no drama
But you wear me down and help create
This crazy-eyed mean-mama

Why must you fight about
The color of your glass
It’s the exact same milk inside
You’re acting like an ass

My hair is falling out now
What’s left is turning gray
Because you whine non-stop
All the live-long day

It doesn’t change my love
Not one tiny little bit
But if you would just listen
Mommy wouldn’t lose her shit

I dream of peace and quiet
But when my dream is done
I wake up to complaining
Mommy-monster I’ve become

So I wave the white flag
I know I’ll never win
I’ll give into the mess
Can you clean with gin?

I’m being hyperbolic
It’s really not that bad
But all your crappy habits
I blame them on your dad

You fill my heart with love
And though you’re why mom jiggles
I love you little bastards
And your contagious little giggles

XOXO- Mommy

photo (4)There are 2 types of people in the world:

People who like to talk about sex and people who think it’s rude to talk about sex.
People who ‘get over’ as soon as the traffic sign says to and Assholes.
People who cook and people who bake.
People who like being happy and people who think they like to be happy but consistently make themselves miserable.
People who can stop after 1 drink and people like me.
People that worry about their kids from the second they are born until forever and dads.
People that want to hold your baby and hear about your baby and love your baby and people that are like ‘talk to me when your 3’.
People that like the Chicago Bears and jerks.
People that think the book is better than the movie and people that don’t care because they are too lazy to read books.
People that follow a strict, clean diet and people that are like ‘Ooohhh, Shamrock shakes are back!’
People that read my blog and big stupid dummies. 🙂

023I went to the new Trader Joe’s in Libertyville yesterday and I was just so inspired! Maybe it was because I am happy to have TJ’s closer to home, maybe it was because it was 50 degrees and sunny after a spirit-crushing winter from hell, but I don’t think that was it. I think it was because I felt like a French Lady at the Market. Can you picture it: some classy woman, dressed well, red lipstick, stopping at the market and picking up a few ingredients and some wine to bring home to her family? This imaginary family then sits around a table for hours enjoying each others company and the delicious food. (If you haven’t learned this about me yet, I have quite the imagination). In this fake scenario, there is none of the typical issues most of us face: no time, kids fighting, family complaining… It is a happy place and I want to live there more often. I am going to live more ‘European’.

In many other countries (France, Italy, Spain, etc.) the food that people eat and their relationship to it is vastly different than our experience in America. Of course I am making extreme generalizations here so if you take offense in anyway- you’re missing the point. In Europe you are less likely to see someone loading up their cart at Wal-mart every other week with convenience food and industrial size tubs of cheese balls. We have become obsessed with saving a buck and saving ourselves calories. We care more about how much fat is in something than what ingredients are in something. Exhausted moms are like zombies in the super market aisles asking themselves ‘will my kid actually eat this?’ On the other hand, people in Europe buy full flavored fresh foods without obsessing over calories. People in Europe don’t avoid chocolate, but they also don’t wolf down a Butterfinger on their way home from work. They ENJOY the chocolate.

When I went to TJ’s, I had no plan and no list. I knew I needed a few dinners, and I was out of wine. I walked the store and picked up things that looked good and fresh. I grabbed a fresh salsa we’ve never had for my husband. I got a whole chicken that I made last night, and I have some fish and soup for tonight. Add in 5 bottles of wine, fresh fruit and veggies, and call it a day. I didn’t bring home anything I am going to regret having in my house. I didn’t buy any food that will sabotage our diets/healthy eating. But most importantly, I didn’t ‘shop-down’ to my kids. I didn’t buy something breaded, bland, and beige for them to eat. I didn’t buy some food-like product that is easily palatable so I can get thru dinner without complaints. I simply bought food. When we ate chicken and roasted veggies last night, so did the kids (Will told me cauliflower is not his favorite). When we eat fish tonight, so will the kids. Now, don’t get me wrong, I don’t live in some weird bizarro world where my kids love everything I make, but they do know that what mommy makes for dinner is what’s for dinner. There is no back up dinner; there is no snack later because you didn’t eat your dinner and there is CERTAINLY no telling mommy that the food is gross! (I will actually be blogging about feeding kids soon so be on the look out for that).

Lastly, food should be wonderful and exciting and fulfilling and fun and delicious. Food shouldn’t be depressing or worrisome or filled with guilt or boring or stressful. People talk about love-hate relationships with food. There should be no hate. By choosing foods that are real and fresh and yummy and preparing them to nourish your family, you will never need to worry about calories again.

So, you can either be:

That frazzled, crazed, hurried woman at Wal-mart, fighting the crowds, cursing people under your breath, schlepping around 3 weeks worth of convenience food, obsessing over how many calories is in your lean cuisine and your vitamin water, wondering if your kids will eat pork chops or if you should just get nuggets for them, and going home feeling crabby and wanting to order pizza.

Or, you can be:

That stylish, calm, collected woman at the ‘market’ smelling the produce and smiling, placing carefully selected ingredients in your basket, bringing home new and exciting flavors for your family to try, and never again worrying about calories or fat because you know that when you focus on nourishing your body and soul, you will never be unhealthy.

It’s all in your head, and you can have that experience too. Just decide it