Trust Me On This One
Listened to the show Saturday and it was not bad. I was taking a bit of a break after cleaning up mud the kids tracked in — they took an afternoon walk and with the snow melting there’s mud all the heck over. I’m hoping for another snowstorm or two, of course, but in the meantime there’s mud to be reckoned with and it’s just one of those things you deal with. It doesn’t take much, and it’s worth it knowing the kids got out and took in some scenery and fresh air.
My brother went out running over the weekend. Five miles, his first run of the year. I know this because he called Monday morning and went on and on about his “runner’s high” and how awesome it is and how I should start running. He talked about running past all the idling cars full of people trying to go places and how angry some of them looked and how he was smiling because he was RUNNING and they squinched their noses at him and he just kept right on going and I really ought to try it.
Well. I was a runner once, back in the day before three people passed through my body and before their schedules became mine and before life went from busy to hectic to manageable chaos. I know about that high, and when your life is like mine, you find ways to get there without running. I walk now and then. I jump on my trampoline. I take bubble baths and paddle canoes and occasionally leap into a lake. I cook with basil, and garlic, and I bake. Yes, people, if you want a real high, a genuine lift-you-up-into-the-sky-and-beg-for-mercy high, try baking with freshly ground ginger, and cinnamon, and nutmeg. Soften some yeast with warm water and breathe in its scent, and you’ll find yourself reeling. Knead a batch of bread dough with your hands and your forearms, or whip up a French Silk pie. You don’t need drugs or running shoes to lift yourself on up. A bowl full of heavy cream, a blender and some Madagascar vanilla will get you there. Trust me on this one.
Chicken Pasta Bake
We’re heading into the chilly-windy-muddy season, when snow and sleet and rain all join together to make life a bit more interesting. Here’s an easy recipe for a filling hot dish everyone will love. Serve with rolls and green beans or carrots, and maybe a fruit cobbler for dessert.
2 cups cooked chicken (2-3 breasts)
1 jar Alfredo sauce
1 box shell pasta
1 can mushrooms
6-8 slivers smoked Gouda
1/4 – 1/2 cup crumbled bacon
1/4 cup seasoned bread crumbs
1/4 cup parmesan cheese
Cube or shred chicken and sauté in olive oil. Cook pasta according to
directions on box. Combine cooked chicken, Alfredo sauce, pasta, mushrooms,
bacon and Gouda in a bowl. Pour into a 2 quart baking dish. Sprinkle with bread
crumbs and parmesan cheese. Bake at 300 for 20 minutes until top is slightly brown.