Routine

I’m so routine oriented.  Being on vacation is awesome, but I also crave my normal routine .. so I cope by forming vacation routines.  I had a whole schedule set today, from the time I would leave the house to go running to the time I would be home after running errands.  I need to learn how to loosen up!

I woke up early – around 5:15 a.m. – and ate a clementine around 7:00 a.m. to get me through my workout.  I’m used to working out first thing in the morning, at 5:00 a.m., on an empty stomach, so I can’t have much more than that.  But I am not used to waiting a few hours before working out, and I got HUNGRY!  The reason I waited was so I could make my husband a hot breakfast before he headed to work.  So I made do with this clementine and headed out for a 6-mile run around 8:30 a.m.

When I got back, I took a shower and took a cup of Three Sisters Honey Oaties to go in a paper cup so I could head out on my errands.  My plan was to go to the bank, the liquor store, and Sam’s Club.  We don’t drink, but I wanted to get some marsala wine to cook dinner with.

I know better than to continue on with my day without having a good breakfast .. after all, I was hungry all afternoon yesterday because I didn’t eat breakfast.  The first thing I did when I got back was get some veggies chopped and into the oven.  In the mix were brussel sprouts, tomatoes, cremini mushrooms, broccoli and garlic, tossed with cumin, 1/2 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil and some red pepper flakes.  I roasted them at 400 degrees for 35 minutes.

In the meantime, I tried to keep myself from chewing my arm off and threw in a load of laundry and picked up around the house.  I was so happy when these veggies were ready – I ate them with a fried egg and two multigrain dinner rolls.  Delicious!

A few hours later, after doing some work from home, I had some whole wheat toast with 2 T of chunky almond butter and 1/2 T maple syrup ..

This helped tide me over until dinner.  I cooked chicken marsala!  It was super easy and surprisingly light.  I used tons of mushrooms, since I didn’t plan on having any chicken.  I’ll include my recipe below.  I served the chicken marsala (or for me, mushroom marsala) on top of whole wheat egg noodles with a side of sauteed organic spinach (not pictured).  It was really good!

Only a few more days of vacation!  I plan to (try to) relax a bit on at least one of these days!  Are any of you insanely routine-oriented or always in need of a plan?

Chicken Marsala
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 lb thinly sliced chicken breast
salt & pepper
3/4 cup flour (I used whole wheat)
1 lb sliced mushrooms (I used 1.5 lbs)
1 onion, sliced thinly
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup marsala wine (I used dry)
1/2 cup chicken stock
2 T half and half (optional)

Heat olive oil in a large skillet/frying pan.  Salt and pepper each piece of chicken and dredge it in flour.  Pan-fry each slice for about 3 minutes on each side, or until cooked through.  Depending on the size of your skillet, you may have to do this in batches to brown them properly.  Put them aside.

Add the mushroom, onion and garlic to the hot pan and saute for about 5 minutes, or until the moisture has cooked out of the mushrooms.  Add the marsala wine and let it cook at high heat until reduced and thickened (about 3 minutes).  Add the chicken stock and continue simmering.  At this point, I also added the chicken back to the mixture to warm it back up.  Taste the sauce and season if necessary.

Before serving, I like to stir in a couple tablespoons of half and half.  It’s not necessary, but adds a luxurious creaminess to the dish without a ton of calories.

If you’re not big on the chicken, you can totally make this with just mushrooms and veggie stock .. that’s how I prefer it!

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