“Why did the chicken cross the road?”
“Because it was the chicken’s day off…”
I recently cut my work hours significantly to just twice a week in the hospital. So the first working day of my new life, I had a leisurely breakfast, did some reading, followed by a long walk in the park. After about 6 months of practically running my life like I was working 2 jobs, I felt my muscles unknotting, and such a sense of calm and wellness setting in. Then by that afternoon something started to happen…
My glucose levels started to drift down despite eating normally and that was when I discovered that my insulin requirements AUTOMATICALLY dropped without all that stress! That was mind-blowing for me. I knew that when I was particularly stressed, or if I were traveling, for example, my glucose would spike 1-2 mmol above normal, but this was the first time I saw it going the opposite direction. So I got instant feedback on the benefits of my new life.
But lest you friends out there think I am doing nothing, the reality is that my schedule is still pretty packed. I still had 4 days out of the week where I had meetings that lasted till 10 or 10.30 pm. I still had multiple emails and Whatsapp messages streaming in constantly. But there was a puposefulness about it, a sense of there being time to think, and paradoxically I have been more efficient at my work tasks and actually procrastinate less on the things I don’t like to do.
So one of the things I had on this week was a dinner thanksgiving for a bunch of women that I have been working with for the past few years. Truly amazing people, all precious gems and jewels in their own right. I think I over-cooked for the occasion, but it was fun although I do have enough food to last at least 3 days (even with giving away a good portion to my in laws as well). When cooking for a large gathering I like to choose dishes that can be spaced out – the recipe below was actually doubled for the occasion, and it was great that the chicken could be roasted in the morning and the sauce in the afternoon, just before the party, it freed up the oven to do other things. This chicken dish reminds me a little of the roasted chicken in cream sauce served at the Poulet restaurants.
So today I’m thankful for my new life, new opportunities and friends and family to share the good stuff with.
Roast Chicken with Mushroom Cream Sauce
- 1 large chicken
- 1 tbsp coarse sea salt
- 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
Mushroom cream sauce
- 200g white or brown mushrooms, quartered
- 6 large cloves of garlic, thinly sliced
- 6-8 shallots, thinly sliced
- 1/2 cup of cream
- 2 tbsp butter
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
- 1 bunch basil leaves, shredded
- Preheat the oven to 200 deg C. Place the whole chicken on a roasting rack and pat the chicken dry.
- Sprinkle the salt and pepper over the chicken and into the cavity of the chicken. Truss the legs of the chicken.
- Roast the chicken for about 50 minutes. Remove from oven and let it cool down, then cut into large pieces. Lower the oven temperature to 180 deg C.
- In a skillet, heat up the butter over medium heat.
- Sauté the garlic till slightly browned, then add the shallots. Sauté further till translucent and fragrant.
- Add the mushrooms and sauté till just slightly softened.
- Add the cream to the pan. Add salt and pepper and simmer for about 5 minutes. Take off the heat.
- Add the basil to the pan, reserving about a small handful of leaves for garnishing.
- Place the roasted chicken pieces into a casserole dish, then pour the mushroom cream sauce on top. Bake in the oven for about 10 minutes.
- Serve hot with fresh shredded basil leaves scattered on top.