Monday, December 19, 2011

Chicken Marsala & Story Time. { i love story time }


I always loved chicken marsala, because I love fresh mushrooms. This is a pretty standard dish that most Italian Trattoria's serve up, but I think I'm downright impressive for having cooked it for my family on a Sunday night. Oh, and modesty is another one of my "interesting" traits. {i have issues, don't mind me} Coincidentally, I doubled the mushrooms from the original recipe. If you love mushrooms as much as me, I suggest you follow suit. 

You may have noticed my super fly serving platter in this picture. But then again, that picture does not do it justice. There is a story behind this here platter. This is where I stray from Chicken Marsala world and enter the strange and unusual going ons of my life. Not to worry, you will thank me later. As I am rather weird. 

Back to this glorious platter...for the longest time I dearly coveted this platter. Until my most recent birthday, when my mother bought it for me. Clearly, she had an utter stroke of genius. She knows full well, I wouldn't splurge on something like this for myself. Here's a better picture of this collection for your viewing pleasure: 

These are sold by Williams Sonoma, this is a 17th-century depiction of forests, castles and animals is based on traditional European folklore. Each bowl is crafted at a small Portuguese pottery where ceramists rely on time-honored techniques to meticulously decorate it by hand. The pieces feature a new creamy white background that sets off the intricate design.
You may buy these -if you wish- at Williams Sonoma. Ok, now I have to get to the story behind this platter. Not to worry, I'm getting there. My ex, Tony, and I have a unique friendship. Then again, we also share a child....so getting along is key for the well being of the child. He lives in NYC as he works there full time and travels back on the weekends to spend time with our kid. He also owns a home in NH, this is where he stays when he comes back to visit with Cob. {cob is my impish 8 year old, who is a mini version of me}.

The Cob - my middle edition
This is where it gets kinda "different". Tony gave me a key to his house. I have it in case of emergencies. {for instance, the last power outage we had....me, my husband and three children stayed in his home as he was staying in his NYC apartment} I know this is unusual, but i think it is a "good unusual". It's better for Cob this way. 

Soooooo, circling back to the platter. Tony makes a lot of money, therefore he has a very well appointed kitchen that I am wicked jealous of. He buys the neatest gadgets and items for his kitchen to serve and cook food with. Let's be honest here, pheasants like you and I cannot afford a one hundred dollar mandolin from William's Sonoma to slice our vegetables with. I'm not going to lie...i love his kitchen gadgets and I want to sneak into his home and thieve everything under the cover of night. 

You see, Tony has this here collection of platters. Knowing he was out of town more often than not, I "borrowed" them with the intention to return. I  had borrowed them several times in the past, when I knew I would be entertaining people,  and then later I would surreptitiously return them to his house when I knew he was still out of town.  Until one day when things got awkward. 

I went to return the borrowed platters, and he was home! I drove by and his car was in the driveway! Blast!!! I circled the neighborhood and called my husband to ask, 'Do you think I should wait till he leaves for NYC to return them or knock on the door and be honest?' Well, after he was done laughing at me inappropriately for a few minutes, he told me to just knock on the door and be honest. So I did just that. Luckily for me....he was wicked cool about it. Now, I don't have to sneak into my ex's house to borrow his stuff. Yay, extra points for awesomeness!

Now enter warp speed into the gaping hole of weirdness.....I asked Tony if he was really using his stand up Kitchenaid mixer. {as he is out of town frequently, and I knew I would need one for my holiday baking merriment} I texted him this question as I didn't have the nuts to call and ask.... I didn't receive a call back. Instead when he dropped off Cob on Sunday afternoon, he came home with this: 

Honestly, I wish everyone who has to go through the painful process of a divorce, could be blessed enough to have a decent ex like Tony. Anyway, he is ultra kind and awesome to me and for that I am very very grateful. Plus he loves our kid. So the mixer.....this was an early bday gift from my Cob. He was soooo excited about giving it to me. Furthermore, so was I..... In fact, I think a few drops of pee came out when I saw the box.

Now what I am about to tell you next will send your weirdness meter soaring off the charts and entering the great depths of the vast unknown galaxy. This is my bff, Ann Forest and I - like OMG, no way whateva!!- Sorry, I momentarily spiraled back in time to the seventh grade. This happens from time to time. We have been dear friends for about thirteen years now. How we met will surely intrigue you. We may just have the most unusual relationship known to mankind.

This is Ann and I getting ready to head out for a Halloween party. We go to the same one every year hosted by our friend's Kevin and Jim. It is off the charts hilarious. every.single.time.

So here it is.....Ann and I both have a child by the same father. Yes, you read that right.....and we couldn't care less about the past. (as an aside, i didn't know Ann when she was with Jamie. we weren't friends till way later. i'm not that creepy. ) Usually during our varied discussions -out of the purview of our kids, of course-, we generally refer to him as the "idiot boy" rather than his "christian name", if you will. Based on that appointed nickname... i feel no further explanation is required as to why we bonded so well. It's all good though... he calls us the "dream team"....so fair is fair.  And no, this wasn't some weird love triangle crap.  No sister wife thing, the story aint that sexy, sorry to disappoint. She was with him, they broke up, then we hooked up. No hard feelings there...no one cares now. He's totally ancient history, and our kids get to share wonderful childhood memories together. Win win!! Now don't you wish you had my oddly exciting lifestyle? Don't answer that.

Left to Right: Myles, Colby, Jason & Brian Kieth. Myles is my oldest son, Colby's brother. Colby is Ann's oldest son.


Let that all soak in..... Now that you know I have three boys, all by three different fathers, it is probably even more strange when you discover I am not a Tijuana crack whore, but a lawyer and happy well adjusted house wife with three awesome boys, and an amazing hubby. I just had to kiss a few frogs before I finally found my sweet hunni.

This is my hubby, James, as if he wasn't sexy enough to begin with....being a hot sketchy bass player in a hard rock band makes him super duper hot. **pssst, i get to do him** hehe. rawr.

So how about that chicken marsala?! enjoy!!! happy holidays everyone ciao ~b

Ingredients:
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour for coating
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves - pounded 1/4 inch thick
  • 6 tablespoons butter (2 tablespoons melted)
  • 6 tablespoons olive oil (divided)
  • 2 cups sliced mushrooms
  • 1 1/2 cups Marsala wine
  • 1 box of pasta of your choice
Directions: 
  1. In a shallow dish or bowl, mix together the flour, salt, pepper and oregano. Coat chicken pieces in flour mixture.
  2. In a large skillet, melt 4 tablespoons of butter and 4 tablespoons of oil over medium heat. Place chicken in the pan, and lightly brown. Turn over chicken pieces, and add mushrooms. Pour in wine, melted butter,  and the 2 tblspoons of olive oil. Cover skillet; simmer chicken 10 minutes, turning once, until no longer pink and juices run clear. 
  3. Bowl pasta of your choice and serve chicken on top with Parmesan cheese if desired.  
Details: Prep Time: 15 minutes  Cook Time: 10-12 minutes Total Time: Approximately 25 minutes Yield: 4 servings of Chicken Marsala

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