Wednesday Evening

Here’s the basic recipe for the chicken dish. I think you could classify it as a tuscan but its one of my classic one pot meals. I used dried herbs here since I had them available but the flavor of fresh is obviously preferred.

3 tbsp olive oil
4 chicken legs
4 chicken thighs
1 large onion, diced
3 cloves garlic
3 celery stalks, diced
3 carrots, diced
4 tbsp apple cider vinegar
2 tbsp basil, dried
2 tbsp oregano, dried.
1 tbsp thyme
1 tbsp rosemary
1 bay leaf
6 oz can of tomato paste
1/4 cup flour
8 oz white beans
3 cups chicken stock

1) In a medium sized stock pot heat olive oil. Season chicken parts with salt and pepper. Brown legs and thighs separately over high heat. No need to cook all the way through. Remove to a plate.
2) Add onion, garlic, celery and carrots. Coat with oil. Add vinegar and delaze pan. Add herbs. Sautee until onion is translucent. Add tomato paste and coat vegetables. Add beans.
3) Return chicken to pot and toss with vegetables. Add flour and mix. Cook for 1 more minute over high heat.
4) Add stock and arrange chicken and vegetables so they are submerged. Add more stock if needed. Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Allow to simmer for two hours with out allowing to come back to a boil.
5) Serve over polenta.

Tuesday Afternoon

I done good.

Despite being trapped in traffic and arriving at macy’s 20 minutes late. Depsite feeling like I was going to throw up on the way there (a mixture of nerves and a guzzled mug of theraflu).

Thanks to my assistant Peter who just went for it with me and got everything done. I value him as a worker and I hope what i paid him reflected that.

There was a smaller audience than I expected since the weather here is crappy. No biggie. People seemed to really be listening. I was so nervous that I’m glad I was behind a stove because I could feel my legs shaking. At one point I was seconds from crying for no reason.

But I gave the signal to the coordinator and just went for it. All of a sudden I was on autopilot and talking and trying to joke and working around mishaps. I burned a sauce for example and channeled the spirit of Julia Child and just redid it. I had some trouble maintianing my train of thought as I was watching the food and still trying to talk like an adult.

The tuna came out over done, no problem. The merlot sauce on the chicken seized up, I fixed it. I think I managed to come across as someone who knows what he’s talking about.
But the people in the audience asked questions and seemed to like the food. One woman came up and said she loved the way i layered flavors. The coordinator said she liked the way I handled myself and the demo and said she’d like me to come back some time.

So now I’m sitting here watching Oprah, kind of emotionally drained, but mighty pleased with myself.