Now that it’s the new year, it’s almost inevitable that I would look back on everything that this year has brought me: A year filled with new friends, new music, and a new, well-supported singing voice; A final school year, a final day of application writing, and a final countdown to my life in college; My first job, my first love, and my first blog.
To think that this year of so many highs and lows is passing…well, it makes me a bit sentimental! I need to sit back and let simplicity wash over me during these kinds of times. When I do, I usually stick with the three basic F’s: family, friends, and food.
Never underestimate the power of a simple, home-cooked dinner with your mom or your l friends. I have been living a very high-stress life the past few months, what with schooling, my job, my productions, what have you; but, boy, does slowing down to actually sit at the dinner table with your mom instead of rushing to your desk with your food make you appreciate who and what you have all around you–a great life, a loyal dog, amazing friends, and good health–and, in my case, what I have before I move to far-away Who-Knows-Where, USA next year for college.
Keep the meal simple: soup and salad, perhaps even just some chicken or stew. My take was pasta, broccoli, chicken, spices–nothing more. Nothing to fancy-shmancy; this dinner is about the simplicity of the food not getting in the way of who you share the meal with. It’s funny how the simplest things can make your life feel that much more substantial.
Garlic Chicken Pasta with Broccoli
Dinner for two
12 oz. chicken breast
1 cup broccoli
3 cloves garlic
1 tbsp & a drizzle of olive oil
1 tsp thyme
1 tsp oregano
2-3 tbsp chicken broth
Salt & pepper (to taste)
Bring a pot of well-salted water to boil and add pasta. Meanwhile, mince garlic and heat oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add garlic to skillet for 15-20 seconds, but don’t brown the garlic. Add chicken and broccoli to skillet, stir once or twice to coat ingredients with olive oil, then add spices. Cover (stirring occasionally as to not brown the broccoli, a mistake I made) until chicken is no longer pink. After 7-10 minutes, or when pasta is al dente, strain pasta, add pasta, chicken, broccoli, and chicken broth (the broth prevents the dish from become dry; VERY important!!! See note under second picture) and stir for 10-20 seconds. Plate, drizzle with olive oil, and sprinkle with salt & pepper to taste.