Balancing Act

Deep down, we all know it’s true. Balancing our life’s work makes everything better. Even Stephen King’s The Shining reveals that simple truth. In a horrifying way, and I actually haven’t seen the film in its entirety, but I digress.

I have come to look forward to my revolting green smoothies in the morning. But in order to balance my healthful breakfast, I purposely Googled a Paula Dean fried chicken recipe last night for dinner.

I kept saying ‘wow’ during dinner. It was the best adjective I could come up with that didn’t interfere with my bite/chewing ritual. This was amazing fried chicken.

I did get the recipe from Paula Dean’s website, but I had to alter it somewhat to fit my family’s needs. For example, it called for 1 cup of Texas Pete’s red pepper sauce in the egg wash; I figured my 11, 8 and 3 year olds might not appreciate that culinary delicacy. I just put eight drops of Tabasco in it. Then it called for self-rising flour in the chicken batter; I never have self-rising flour on hand, so I doctored up my all-purpose flour with salt and baking powder. Other than that, I followed her directions to a T. The drawback was the length of time from prep to table; TWO HOURS. Why did it take so long? We scored some beautiful fresh poultry at Aldi; 5 thigh/drum stick pieces for only $3.46. DH said he did a double-take at the price. The chicken pieces were especially fat. The recipe suggested 14 minutes per thigh and my big pan only fit three big thighs at once. Plus, I just couldn’t get the meat up to temp. We’re paranoid about salmonella over here, not to mention, pink chicken meat is uber-unappetizing. What I ended up doing was frying the chicken up to 155 degrees and then baking it the rest of the way to 180. Even though it took FOREVER, when I sunk my teeth into my first crispy juicy bite of flavorful chicken, I closed my eyes so I could even better appreciate my sense of taste. This was some seriously delicious fried chicken.

Now on to my latest green smoothie update. This morning’s smoothie was 1/2 cup water, 2 cups fresh spinach, 1/2 cup frozen peas, 4 fat frozen strawberries and one small very ripe banana. The peas added just the right sweet and hearty flavor to my boring spinach shake. Behold.

It's Booger Green!

Prize-winning chicken; Not gluten-free.