Tuesday, May 17, 2011

A New Kind of Joy!

I have to tell you.  I am salivating right now.  Why is that, Joey?

Because this afternoon I mixed up a big ole batch of CHICKEN MARBELLA.  And THAT my friends, gives me Anticipatory Joy.  Is anticipatory even a word???  Well it is NOW!  Because Chicken Marbella has to marinate overnight.  So that means I am anticipating my joy when that first bite explodes flavor into my mouth tomorrow!

Apparently, I am in the minority when it comes to knowledge of Chicken Marbella.  Last summer, my husband brought home a container of some chicken dish from The Cooking Company.  I came down from the gym and an evening of training wonderful women and without paying even one bit of real attention to what I was doing, I stuck a fork into the container and wolfed took a mouthful of chicken.  Well.  Wellllllllllll.  I almost SWOONED.  That forkful may very well have created the most grounded moment of my life.  I literally stopped and just groaned with complete JOY.  When I say flavor EXPLODED in my mouth?  Trust me - it was the most flavorful food I had ever eaten.  I went on to demolish the container.

The crazy thing is I mentioned the experience to my brother-in-law.  I said I had the best chicken I ever had the other night.  It had olives and garlic in it.  He casually said to his wife, "Oh, that must be - what's the name of that dish?  Chicken Marbella!"  I was like, what?  No - you couldn't possibly know what the name of this dish is!  So he started describing it - prunes, garlic, olives - yes, yes!  And then my sister-in-law says, "Yea - it's from the Silver Palette Cookbook".  Oh - how stupid of me...I mean, come ON.  They work on a 150 foot yacht with a private chef.  Maybe they DO know what it's called...

So a few days later, I started talking to my fitness class about my chicken dish experience.  One of my clients casually says, "Oh yea - that's Chicken Marbella from The Silver Palette."  HUH!!!!  Am I living in the dark ages??  So I start telling ANOTHER class and someone ELSE says it.  Geeshhhhh -

Well - at any rate, I am now a connoisseur of Chicken Marbella.  I don't make it very often because I usually can't bear the wait overnight for it to marinade but I made it today and I can't wait for Anticipatory Joy tomorrow!  Here's the recipe so you too can jump on my Anticipatory Joy wagon.

By the way - the recipe calls for ALOT of chicken.  I usually cut the amount of chicken in half but keep everything else the same because I LOVE that marinade!  Enjoy!


4 chickens, 2 1/2 pounds each, quartered
1 head of garlic, peeled and finely pureed
1/4 cup dried oregano
coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1/2 cup red wine vinegar
1/2 cup olive oil
1 cup pitted prunes
1/2 cup pitted Spanish green olives
1/2 cup capers with a bit of juice
6 bay leaves
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup white wine
1/4 cup Italian parsley or fresh coriander (cilantro), finely chopped


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a large bowl combine chicken quarters, garlic, oregano, pepper and coarse salt to taste, vinegar, olive oil, prunes, olives, capers and juice, and bay leaves. Cover and let marinate, refrigerated, overnight.

Arrange chicken in a single layer in one or two large, shallow baking pans and spoon marinade over it evenly. Sprinkle chicken pieces with brown sugar and pour white wine around them.

Bake for 50 minutes to 1 hour, basting frequently with pan juices. Chicken is done when thigh pieces, pricked with a fork at their thickest, yield clear yellow (rather than pink) juice.

With a slotted spoon transfer chicken, prunes, olives and capers to a serving platter. Moisten with a few spoonfuls of pan juices and sprinkle generously with parsley or cilantro. Pass remaining pan juices in a sauceboat.

To serve Chicken Marbella cold, cool to room temperature in cooking juices before transferring to a serving platter. If chicken has been covered and refrigerated, allow it to return to room temperature before serving. Spoon some of the reserved juices over chicken

Saturday, May 14, 2011

My Other Self

So my friend Karen, put out a blog post the other day called My Other Self.  This was her challenge:

What does YOUR Other Self look like?
I challenge you to do a similar post

So here I am Kar!

First and foremost, I am aging OHHHH so gracefully!  I still wear a bikini! And guess what?  I look HOT!

For a living, I passionately train women to feel and look great!

In a gym I own and operate from my home in the Emerald City in Winter and

in the summer, on Block Island where I live in my simple Block Island home.


I remain madly in love 


My gardens are beautiful and they are all my creation.

 I ski in winter and 

skate reallllllyyyyy good.

My kids grow 

and I do this on the beach all summer, in my hammock in the fall and in front of my fire in the winter.

My needs are simple but I must do this ALOT,  

And also this

Because when I do those, I am doing this

and nothing is more important than that...


You know, when my husband had hernia surgery last July, amongst other man jobs, I had to deal with garbage detail.  Now if you live in a city, you most likely have municipal provided garbage pickup .  In the Emerald City, we have a dump Transfer Station.  Fancy name - kinda like Sanitation Engineer - ROLL MY EYES...

Now don't mis-understand, you can get garbage pick up in the Emerald City, but you have to pay for it.  In lieu of that, our illustrious municipality provides a dump Transfer Station which is open Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday for about 6 hours each day.  This means you can load your car with garbage, wait in a long line of cars (mostly man of the house drivers doing one of their man jobs) and when it's your turn, you get to unload your garbage and drop it into the stinky box hopper.  (BTW - my garbage pile doesn't look this pretty!)

So, the problem is - if you forget to go on Tuesday, now you have 4 days of garbage to load into your nice car on Thursday.  And if you forget Thursday,  you have like 12 bags of garbage to load into your nice car on Saturday.  It's GROSS.  It's a Pain in the A__ and I hate it!!  (Now if I owned a truck, maybe this wouldn't even make my blog!  You see - it's not like you can just lift your 50 gallon garbage "can" onto the bed of your truck.  Each bag has to be loaded into your car - in my case, mom-van - INDIVIDUALLY!  Ugh!)

So - back to the story - I became the Sanitation Engineer last July when my husband had his surgery.  I was ok with that because, hey, a girls gotta do what a girls gotta do!  6 weeks later, I couldn't figure out why a girl gotta do this still!!!!!!!  I mean - I was really good at it - don't get me wrong.  And I learned to be very Type A about it.  I figured it out that if you went all 3 days each week, you were only dealing with a few bags at a time (including your recyclables) and it was a very easy job.  But if you missed a day or god forbid - TWO.  One time, I missed all THREE days!  Trust me you quickly learn how to be a Type A Sanitation Engineer.

Well sometime in September - I finally went on strike.  (Isn't that what Sanitation Engineers do from time to time?)  And the hub started doing his the job again.  But I noticed he often missed 1, 2 sometimes all THREE dump days.  Then he was crabby and I was crabby and it just was annoying and quite the nuisance.

(Now before you say, "What a bum!", you should know that my very hardworking husband not only runs 2 of our 3 businesses and does his man work, he is also very much involved with feeding our kids, getting them ready for school, helping them with their homework, coaching their teams, getting them to karate, piano, skating, baseball, playdates, blah blah blah, because I work as a fitness trainer.  What does that have to do with him doing everything and me doing nothing so much around our house?  Well in my defense, people usually work out in the morning before work or after the kids get on the bus and after work.  Hence - breakfast and dinner time.  Get it?)

Well, we had a bad run this past month and garbage got out of hand.  Just too much Easter, karate, piano, skating, baseball, playdates, blah blah blah.  Aghhhhhhhhhhhhh!!!!!  I finally just had enough and loaded the van TWICE - and got rid of it.  (How much do I hate this part of country living????)  That was 2 weeks ago.  I decided I was NOT letting this control us ever again.  I don't think the hub realizes it yet, but I am now the self proclaimed Sanitation Engineer.  Yea - where the heck is the JOY in THAT??????  I'm sure HE will have JOY when he realizes.  (Heyyyy - was this a trick???)

But there is!  There is JOY!!!  Because you see...


Woohoo!!!!!  I ROCK!  Hey - it's a stretch but come onnnnnnnnn!