Support group: Hi Kristina.
Yes, I am one of "those" people. The ones I previously thought of as disturbed that stand in line for hours to savor 2 seconds of time with a celebrity they adore/stalk. Last night, I met Ree Drummond aka The Pioneer Woman at a local signing of her cookbook here in Atlanta. (In case you aren't familiar, PW has the most amazing blog filled with delicious recipes, beautiful photography and generally entertaining stories about life on an Oklahoma cattle ranch with her cowboy hubby and four kids.)
Now, I have had my share of teenage celebrity crushes (circa NKOTB) and continue to be slightly obsessed with yummies like Jon Bon Jovi (Black leather pants, really? Mmm.) and George Clooney. Never in my life though, have I spent an evening standing in line for someone's signature and a quick shutter click. Until last night.
I must say, there was something quite exhilirating about the frenzy. There were women from Florida and South Carolina that had made girls' trips out of it; there were people like myself that thought it would be cool to just pop over from work; and there were ladies that just wanted an opportunity to chat foodie to foodie (and to find out what Marlboro Man aka PW's cowboy is really like).
PW has quite a following, so it took a bit longer than I expected to actually get to the front of the line, and I'm not sure what I thought would happen (fireworks? spontaneous celebrity by association? instant girlfriend status?), but it was a fun way to spend a Monday evening. Treating myself to a sugar-n-spice latte and piece of chocolate peppermint bread didn't hurt either.
And to think...just a few years ago, she randomly started a blog to entertain herself and keep family and friends updated on her kids. Now she's got sold-out cookbook signings and a mega-popular blog. Definitely makes me think...where can I get one of those cowboys?
Since I read the cookbook (which I highly recommend!) cover to cover while waiting in line, naturally what did I do when I got home at 10:30 p.m.? Grilled chicken, of course!
Seriously, I had a couple boneless, skinless breasts in my favorite marinade and needed to cook them before they were no longer viable. They were deliciously juicy and perfectly done; tender and crispy at once. Too bad the raisin bran I had for dinner didn't taste the same.
After grilling them up on my nonstick grill pan (i.e., panini pan without the panini press), these babies were ready for some red potatoes or a salad. Note: when grilling indoors, always turn on a fan...I'm not sure why I can never learn that lesson until my house smells like chicken for three days.
Tip: if you've not explored your local grocery's marinade section, do so immediately. My favorite marinades are from my local Kroger - this chicken had been getting happy all day in the juices of lemons and herbs o'plenty (mixed in with a shake of no-salt seasonings).
Dinner tonight: grilled chicken atop a bed of baby romaine and spinach topped with feta cheese, dried cranberries and sweet vidalia onion dressing (which I scarfed down too quickly and forgot to snap a photo...you'll just have to use your imagination.)
Who says leftovers are boring?
Fantastic Chicken for the Week
2-4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 bottle of your favorite marinade (I used 30-minute lemon, garlic, herb)
A few shakes of your favorite no-salt seasoning (I use Costco's misc. seasonings, you could use lemon pepper, Montreal Steak, or any other seasoning that floats your boat that day)
Place chicken breasts in a ziploc bag. Pour the marinade over the chicken, add seasonings, seal bag and shake until well coated. Place in the refrigerator for several hours (overnight is best). Grill, broil or bake to your desired doneness. Enjoy the chicken for dinner, lunch, snacks for the rest of the week.
(I like mine over salad for lunch or with roasted potatoes and veggies for dinner; but get crazy! There are no rules!)