We’re up to our necks in cardboard and bubble wrap, the baby’s furniture is finally ordered, and I’m coordinating with movers, utility companies, and our Realtor left and right. I guess you could say I’ve had a productive week and Lord knows I need to be, with the impending changes that are on the horizon. That’s right, changes are a comin’… Our bouncing – and kicking (specifically, my diaphragm) – baby will be here in T minus eight weeks and we’re on the verge of moving in five days. Yes, moving. Doesn’t everyone decide to do this at eight months pregnant? This move is the “minor” little item I alluded to in my most recent post , but failed to mention on the blog the past several months. With our growing family and evolving careers, we decided to put our home for sale and find something that fits our new family and lifestyle better. While we’ve had our home on the market for a while, I should have looked to Murphy’s law and known that the sale and move wouldn’t happen at a more ideal time, such as a physically nimble three months pregnant. Instead, the proverbial “ish” has hit that fan and we’re making our move the end of my pregnancy. Fortunately, I’m always up for a challenge and believe that I thrive in chaos; moreso, thrive on organizing the chaos.
In the midst of the real estate craziness, I’ve been trying to keep focus on having fun and all of the excitement that is the new little peanut about to join us. The key word here is ”trying.” I’ve had some ups and downs the past couple months when I just wanted to be a “normal pregnant woman” (whatever that is). Instinctively, I feel like I should have been nesting – buying furniture, picking out drapes, and painting walls in our baby’s room- and putting my feet up leading up to this time. However, those things have been near impossible to do without knowing if we’d still be in our current home or a new one by the time the stork stops by. The “not knowing” has been extraordinarily frustrating, but I think it has made me stronger and given me a renewed faith that all things happen as they should in due time. When does anything in life truly happen according to your schedule and plan? In my life, not often. Within the past couple weeks – after nearly exhausting our last bit of sanity – we found a fantastic home to start the next chapter in our life that will allow us to move in immediately, giving ample time to get settled and even some quiet time to enjoy with each other before our new addition arrives. Hallelujah!
Despite less time in our evening than normal for cooking, we’ve been attempting to eat in when we can. Today’s recipe is my spin on traditional chicken milanese that incorporates all things salty and tasty that I’ve been craving during my pregnancy, such as cheese and olives. It’s simple and quick to throw together if you stock chicken in your freezer and a few pantry staples. Plus, you can easily transform it into a filling salad with a few tweaks (see this tip in the notes below).
Mediterranean Chicken Milanese
1 large egg
1/2 cup Italian seasoned bread crumbs (or whole wheat)
2 boneless skinless chicken breasts, sliced in half horizontally and pounded into thin cutlets
3/4 cup extra light olive oil
For the topping:
1 whole roasted red pepper, roughly chopped
1/3 cup pitted kalamata olives, halved long ways
2 cups packed arugula leaves
A couple slices of red onion
2 Tbsp. pine nuts
8 – 10 shavings of Pecorino Romano cheese
For the dressing:
2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
2 tsp. balsamic vinegar
Pinch of salt
Fresh ground pepper
Preheat the oven to 150-degrees.
Beat egg in a shallow bowl and season with salt and pepper. Pour bread crumbs onto a large plate. Dip the chicken in the egg and then dredge in the bread crumbs, pressing gently to adhere.
In a large saute pan, heat the olive oil over medium. Fry each chicken cutlet 3-4 minutes on each side until golden brown and cooked through. Drain on a paper-towel lined plate. Transfer the cutlets to a prepared baking sheet and keep warm in the oven.
In the meantime, combine the red pepper, olives, arugula, red onion, and pine nuts in a medium bowl. Whisk the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper in a small bowl. Toss the dressing with the arugula mixture. Remove the chicken from the oven and top each cutlet with a healthy plop of the dressed greens. Finish each with a few shavings of cheese.
A few notes:
- To transform this meal into a dinner sized salad: Double every ingredient in the topping and dressing, plus add 2 – 3 more cups of arugula depending on how big you like your salad. Slice the chicken cutlets into 1″ strips and toss with the greens and dressing before plating.
- I love peppery arugula in this dish, but escarole or your favorite leafy green would be fine substitutes.