Saturday, April 6, 2013

Creamy Chicken Verde Bake

Happy weekend everyone!  I am so happy that this week is OVER.  Work was extra busy this week, plus working a full day Sunday just seemed to make the days endless.  This weekend I don't have many plans, except for going out to dinner last night with my bestie.  We went to Dinosaur BBQ in Troy--my first time going and let me tell you, I was not disappointed.  I got an amazing plate with pulled pork and smoked brisket and maple whipped sweet potatoes on the side.  Sadly, I promised the Coach leftovers but there were none to be seen (barely restrained myself from licking the plate), so being the nice wife that I am, I got him a half rack of ribs to go.  Not too shabby, huh?

The Coach and I enjoyed a relaxing morning today, including a trip to the Iron Roost in Ballston Spa.  Ummm gluten free waffle + bananas + nutella = smiley sugar coma.  That place is stupid good and I can't wait to bring everyone I've ever met there.  Yum.

So two meals in a row out is pretty rare for me--the Coach and I usually go out to eat a couple times a month total so back to back has left me feeling fairly large and in charge.  I'm looking forward to some nourishing food these next couples of weeks, but I don't regret the two DELICIOUS meals I had, plus the good company I shared :)


Friday morning I put together another circuit for myself that looked like this: kettlebell deadlift, off-set push-ups, off-set kettlebell squat, one-arm bench press, and front plank with hip flexion.  That last one uses Valslides, which are discs that provide an unstable training surface that allows you to simulate slideboard exercises.  I've used them for reverse lunges too, and they are just killer.  A lot of the exercises today targeted core, so by the end I was having a tough time keeping my abs tight--definitely a sign of a hard workout.  I finished up with 60s on, 60s off jumping rope.  Definitely a productive week in the gym!


Thursday night I made this Creamy Chicken Verde Bake adapted from Fast Paleo.  This recipe calls for arrowroot to use as a thickener--in these recipes I tend to skip any added thickeners, whether arrowroot, coconut flour, cornstarch, etc.  I'm just too lazy to spend the money on those extra ingredients.  If I'm cooking something on the stove, I'll just spend an extra couple of minutes simmering the sauce to thicken it, or (more likely) I'll just suck it up and have a runnier sauce.  Oh well.  So I'll include the arrowroot in the ingredient list, but just know that I didn't use it--yes the sauce was a bit thin but still delicious!

Creamy chicken verde bake
1.5lbs boneless skinless chicken thighs
2 cups green verde salsa (about 1 jar)
1 can unsweetened full fat coconut milk (I used reduced fat because it's what I had on hand)
1 butternut squash, peeled and diced
1 TBS arrowroot, dissolved in 2 TBS cold water (I skipped this)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Put the butternut squash in the bottom of the pan, season with s&p.  Place the chicken on top of the squash, season with s&p.  Mix the salsa, coconut milk, salt and cayenne in a bowl, then pour over the chicken.  Bake for 40 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through.
If you use the arrowroot to thicken your sauce, bake for 30 minutes then add the arrowroot/water mixture to the pan and stir a bit, then bake 10 minutes longer.

This recipe could not be easier to throw together.  You literally just toss everything in the pan and let it cook away.  The Coach and I agreed that the flavor of the chicken was amazing and it stayed so moist and tender by cooking it in the coconut milk sauce.  The butternut squash was only medium.  Next time I'll play around with the vegetable--I adapted the recipe by adding the squash since I thought the sweetness would play off nicely with the spicy salsa, but next time I might try just some sliced onions and peppers for a fajita-type take on the recipe.  Definitely a make again though--plenty of leftovers!

The Coach and I are spending this weekend doing some Spring cleaning, since he is just now unpacking his bag from the work trip he got back from on Sunday.  Don't say nagging never accomplished anything!

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