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Small Changes with Big Results and Spaghetti with Chicken and Artichoke Sauce #Recipe

Posted Nov 12 2012 4:34am
Oh, what a day! At 4:00 am Jeffrey got me up with his constant meowing. Around 4:30 am we kicked him out of the bedroom but he just cried outside the door. For three hours. Clearly I did not spend enough time playing with him before bed last night. If you have a cat who does not sleep through the night the secret is this: play (so he can hunt) until he is tired, feed him, then he'll groom and then he's ready for bed. If there is enough playing and enough food he should sleep through the night. Okay, enough cat chat.

Workout

My goal today was to work out twice but I spent too much time cooking. You can never go wrong cooking whole foods for your family though. I did manage to get in one mile but it took a little longer than I'd like. Probably because I didn't spend enough time working out last week. But it is all good.

After my mile, I went outside to the front porch and caught up on my #YogaADay challenge. It was so beautiful out and I just loved it. It's supposed to be getting cold again but when spring rolls around there may be a lot of yoga and Pilates happening on my porch.



Notice that my IPod buds are still hanging around my neck. Music is for running. Not yoga. 

Breakfast

One day I'll put my smoothies in my fancy glasses that I have for fancy picture taking but I'm usually in a rush so you'll just see it in my Blender Bottle.

 
Today's smoothie was pineapple. Why is it green? Spinach, of course. Ingredients: 3 rings of fresh pineapple (mine are more squares because I can't cut a pineapple in a circle. Can anyone?), handful of spinach, one frozen banana, rice milk, 2 tablespoons Navitis Naturals  flax powder.

I have to say that I still think my smoothie stinks. I've blamed it on the maca powder but I don't know. Maybe I'm not washing my Blender Bottle well enough. Regardless, it tastes yummy.

After church I went to the local grocery store to stock up on the ingredients for today's cooking. While I was looking for the capers I noticed that we pickle everything out here. I thought it might be because of the large German influence but  my Grandpa was German and I never remember anything being pickled. Although vinegar shows up in just about anything so maybe it is the same.

As soon as I got the groceries put away it was time to pick up Colton. I had a coupon for Halmark and Khol's so I had him drive me there. At Halmark I got a new Santa cookie jar. Because you can't have too many Santa's. Or cookie jars for that matter. I did spend more on it than I had wanted to spend ($9 something after tax and coupon) but I couldn't resist. There went my allowance.


At Khol's I got a new rug for $4 after coupon. It is super big and nice so I was excited to get it for such a steal. It is regularly $39.99 before tax. This one had lots of green in it so after Jeffrey was done trying it out I switched the rugs around in the house and put all the green one's in the kitchen and took the red one's downstairs. My kitchen feels like it's brand new and I love it! All for four bucks. 




Lunch 

Lunch was late because it was cooking day and I spent more time shopping than I'd anticipated. But when I finally had it made, I chowed down on some Spaghetti with Chicken and Artichoke Sauce.

Spaghetti with Chicken and Artichoke Sauce

Prep Time:  25 minutes
Cook Time:  25 minutes
Servings:  8
Inspiration:   Martha Stewart



Ingredients

Salt and Pepper
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
16 thin chicken cutlets (about 3 pounds total)
4 tablespoons olive oil
2 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth
2 can (14 ounces) artichoke hearts packed in water, rinsed, drained, and quartered
4 tablespoons rinsed and drained capers
4 tablespoons butter
8 ounces whole wheat spaghetti
8 ounces spaghetti
1/2 cup parsley leaves

Directions:
  1. Place flour in a shallow dish, add salt and pepper. Rinse cutlets then pat dry. Lightly flour the chicken cutlets. 
  2. In a large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium-high. Cook chicken in batches, adding oil as needed (this is not supposed to be greasy so keep it 
  3. light). It will take about three minutes per side, place in a dish to the side as each dish batch comes out.
  4. Add stock to empty skillet. Don't clean it out, you want the little bits in there. Bring to a boil. Boil down to half. 
  5. Add artichokes, capers, and the chicken. If there is any chicken juice add that but I found that since I used so little oil there wasn't any. 
  6. Gently stir and bring to boil. Remove skillet from heat. Swirl in butter, and cover to keep warm.
  7. While you are doing this cook pasta per direction to get to al dente. I use half and half to appease others in my house. All whole wheat would be preferred. 
  8. Drain pasta. 
  9. Serve chicken sauce over pasta topped with parsley.
  10. Tips:

    If you are cooking in a large batch to save for later, save some of the water that you cooked the pasta in. Store the pasta with a little bit of the water you cooked it in (separate from the chicken sauce). This will keep the spaghetti from getting hard. Additionally, saving the pasta separate from the chicken sauce allows you to use it in another recipe should you need to. 

    Dinner:

    For dinner I made a Shepherd's Pie. Yeah, of course I made some changes! But you'll have to wait for that. I'm getting tired y'all.
    What I read:


    I thought this little blurb in Fitness RX was really good. Basically it says if you run (SS type not interval) it interferes with your strength gains by up to 50%. However, the combination of SS (Slow Steady) running combined with weight training  produces the largest amount of fat loss. So if you're goal is to build big muscles skip the SS training. If you're goal is to have low body fat do both. 


    I saw this Tweet today and just had to check out the article. You seriously have to check this  Geek Girl  article out if you are a blogger, own an Etsy shop, etc. I'll let you read it for yourself but if I post a Facebook picture at 4:00 pm ET on a Wednesday that uses an emoticon, asks a short question, and asks them to write a caption of the picture I should get a surge of traffic so high that my Facebook page shuts down. LOL! Seriously, check it out. 

    Have you ever made a small change that made a huge difference in your home? How was your workout today? Do you cook in bulk on the weekend? Have you entered the  Navitas Naturals giveaway?
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