Fancy Pants

Chronicles of a simple girl in a sparkling world


3 Comments

The Struggle is Real. So Real.

written on Monday. finalized today. wine distracted me. whoops.

Y’all. It’s Monday. But on top of that, it’s the first Monday back after 2 touch and go weeks of work. You know, the weeks of Christmas and New Years. I have an amazing boss who gives us either the week of Christmas or New Years off, plus the day of the holiday off, so I’ve really been enjoying the downtime. But not the downtime teachers have! hehe. Back to reality, MOM. 🙂 That being said, today has been a struggle. I could barely wake up/get out of bed. (and on tuesday, I slept through/turned off THREE alarms. get. it. together. jennifer.) And then I had ADD/ADHD allllllll day. I hit myself in the head with a weight at the gym (yes, my trainer laughed at me) and then I tripped over a chair at the gym! UGH. And it’s cold. Still positive and way warmer than the negative crap in Minnesota and Wisconsin coworkers are experiencing, but for this Texas girl, it’s getting extreme.

Ok. and it MIGHT have something to do with the fact that I am addicted to Scandal, but haven’t been able to watch this season because I am also addicted to football. DVR Scandal, watch Thursday Night Football – that’s my life in the fall. Luckily, not many of my friends are addicted to Scandal and pretty much NO ONE posts about it on Facebook, so no spoilers are given! Anyways, I had 4 episodes until the end of the season last night, and I COULD. NOT. STOP. watching. It ended up being a later night than I wanted.

Anyways, one of my new years resolutions (I’ll blog about all of them later) is to try AT LEAST one new recipe per week. I saw someone have this as their resolution last year and I thought it was a great idea. I have SO many cookbooks that all have recipes that sound delicious and I am a Pinterest addict. I’m also starting to get bored with food, so I really need to start making new things. side note: i’m on meal plans to attempt to be a healthier person and steamed veggies and george foreman chicken is getting old. fast. Let’s just hope I can keep this one up.

Tonight, I tried two new recipes – my Uncle Looch’s chicken and rice & roasted brussel sprouts. First one I have had before just haven’t ever made it and second one I haven’t had or made. but i’ve had roasted brussel sprouts before. I must say, very successful dinner! Since I am only one person I halved the chicken and rice.

Uncle Looch’s Chicken and Rice

2 c. rice (I used brown rice, can’t taste the difference)

2 c. water

1 tbls. butter

1 package of onion soup mix

3-4 chicken breasts (frozen or not frozen)

salt and pepper

Mix everything but the chicken and s&p together. cover and bake for 30 minutes at 400 degrees (or until chicken is completely cooked).

IMG_5266

Chicken and Rice before it was cooked. You can see how the rice soaked up nearly all of the liquid.

This recipe is super easy and delicious! Like I said I halved the recipe, but used the full onion soup mix because I love the flavor of it. If I ever make the full recipe, I will likely use 2 packages of it. I also realized as I was typing this out I forgot the butter. Told y’all I’ve been a disaster lately. sigh.

Since no one I never actually remember to take the meat out of the freezer the night before, I put the chicken breasts in frozen. My uncle has always made it the morning of and let it sit in the fridge all day. The rice soaks up the soup mix throughout the day and makes it yummy! I would really suggest not putting them in frozen. I’d also suggest pounding them so they are thinner. I ended up having to cook mine for 40 minutes. Good thing is, the rice didn’t dry out at all. I used 2 chicken breasts so I could get 4 meals out of it. When you put the chicken on the rice, don’t forget to add the s&p. I totes forgot to do that, too. BBBUUUUTTTTT it was still delicious because of the yummy soup mix.

Roasted Balsamic Brussel Sprouts (recipe adapted from here.)

1 lb. of brussel sprouts

3 tbls. olive oil

3+ tbls. balsamic vinegar

s&p

Wash brussel sprouts. Cut in half hotdog style. (YES. Brussel sprouts have hotdog and hamburger style, too.) Toss in olive oil. Toss in balsamic vinegar. Line in one layer on cookie sheet. Cook on 400 degrees for 20-30 minutes.

This too was super easy. I was slightly nervous since it was my first time to really roast a vegetable. When I was done, I had cooked them for 27 minutes, and preferred the sprouts that had been cooked with the flat part on the cookie sheet. It seems they caramelized a bit more than the others. The time is totally dependent upon how cooked/caramelized you want them. Also, I took them out at 20 minutes to check them and sprinkled a little more balsamic vinegar on them. When I got them ready to bake, I didn’t feel like the balsamic was “sticking” to them. I don’t know if next time I need to dry them better, or maybe I just need to make all of them be flat side down. They turned out amazing so I’m just going to not change any ingredients. haha. I am not a big fan of pepper, and while you couldn’t taste it, i probably wouldn’t waste it on there next time. When I went to the grocery store, I learned that there isn’t a balsamic vinegar, and then versions from that. There are just versions of balsamic. Soooooo, I guessed on which on to get. I showed the picture for you people like me who don’t know these things.

IMG_5267

Brussel sprouts after being tossed in oil and vinegar but before baking. You can see here why I didn’t feel like the balsamic vinegar “stuck” well.

IMG_5268

The balsamic I used.

IMG_5269

After 27 minutes of baking, they’re DONE! And yes, I ate one to see if I thought it was done enough. 🙂 Is there any other kind of test than taste test?!

IMG_5270

Wine. because it’s absolutely delicious. Lost Oak Viognier. Buy it. You won’t regret it.

IMG_5272

Here is a picture of the brussel sprouts comparing the flat side down and flat side up. I swear the dark ones aren’t burnt. Not even really crispy. Just perfect. 🙂 I’m putting them all face down next time.

Both recipes were a hit, even though I am the only one who ate them. Actually, I’d probably be more credible if I had someone to try them with me, but I’m a single lady preparing to be a housewife and it’s better for me to like it than not like it. Both recipes reheated well also. I did them for 2 minutes, cut the chicken and then did one more minute.

Hope everyone has a great week!

xoxo jenn