Monday, April 29, 2013

Random Cookbook of the Week: A New Turn in the South (wherein Susanna botches the recipe)

This week I drew A New Turn in the South by Hugh Acheson, one of my newer cookbooks. It's based on the food at the author's Five and Ten restaurant in Athens, GA. I've never been to Athens, but I gather the Five and Ten is where I'll want to eat if I ever make it there.

That said, given that this weekend I was still fighting off the bug that kept me in the ER on Thursday afternoon, I went with one of the simplest recipes in the book.

Lemonade with Vanilla, Mint & Rosemary

8 c. cold water
8 large lemons
1 c. granulated sugar
10 springs fresh mint
1/2 vanilla bean, scraped seeds and pod
1 spring of fresh rosemary

Pour the water in a large pot over high heat and bring to a boil. While the water is coming to a boil, halve the lemons and juice them thoroughly. Place the juice and the juiced lemon halves in a large heat-proof non-reactive pot. Add the sugar, 2 springs of mint, the vanilla seeds and pod, and the rosemary.

Pour the boiling water over the mixture. Stir carefully and let sit for 20 minutes. Stir well again and strain out the solids, then discard them and pour the lemonade into Mason jars or a large pitcher and keep refrigerated until people get thirsty.

To serve, pour the lemonade over ice in tall glasses, garnish each with a mint leaf, and sit on a porch.

Mr. Fraser and I gave the lemonade an identical verdict of "too much vanilla," and I'd decided not to make it again. Only just now as I was transcribing the recipe I realize that yesterday I misread the recipe and put in a WHOLE vanilla bean rather than half one. Maybe if I'd actually made it right, we would've been able to taste the rosemary and mint. Oops. That's a bit of a blow to my perfectionism and image of myself as a good cook! I think I'll have to give the recipe one more try after all.

Friday, April 26, 2013

2013 Reading, Books 40-42 (and medical adventures)

I woke up yesterday with a racing heart (120 beats/minute) and elevated blood pressure (150/90). I have a strong family history of hypertension, which first reared its head in my own life when I was pregnant with Miss Fraser and ended up on bed rest for the last two months. Even though my non-pregnant blood pressure was at worst borderline high, I've been on a low-dose blood pressure med for years now in hopes of staving off my strong family history of stroke and heart disease. My doctor hopes  my current weight loss and exercise program will ultimately end my need for such meds, but given that my oldest brother runs marathons and takes the same medication that I do, I have my doubts. Sometimes your worst genes trump your best behavior.

Anyway, my meds do such a good job of keeping my bp stable and normal that 150/90 was enough to freak me out a little, especially when coupled with the racing heart and an off-and-on dizzy, wobbly sensation. When I didn't feel any better after eating breakfast and when my blood pressure at a podiatrist appointment was something like 155/100, I freaked out seriously and went to my regular doctor. She did a quick EKG and reassured me that my heart sounded healthy and normal, just excessively fast, but she couldn't figure out what was going on and ultimately advised that I go to the ER for my own peace of mind, because otherwise I was just going to keep making myself feel even worse worrying.

So, I ended up spending about 2 1/2 hours in the ER, most of which was curled up in my room by myself with a book. Which made me feel better all by itself, since clearly they weren't too worried about me. Indeed, the doctor said that there are people who walk around with bp like mine was yesterday for decades. Which amazed me, because I feel like my everyday, medicated 125/80 or so isn't anywhere near good enough, and I can't count myself truly healthy unless I get it down to 120/70 or even lower. But they did agree that a suddenly elevated pulse and bp with no obvious cause was worth investigating and did the usual assortment of tests, ultimately diagnosing me with a UTI and sending me home with an antibiotic prescription. (Which I can forgive my regular doctor for missing, since I didn't have the obvious symptom of burning when I pee, and the symptoms I did have were subtle enough that I interpreted them as other things.)

All of which is a very long-winded way of saying that between the afternoon at the ER and staying home from the day job today to rest and recuperate, I had more reading time than usual this week.

40) Escape from Camp 14, by Blaine Harden.

The true story of a young man who was born and raised inside a brutal labor camp in North Korea and escaped at age 23--at least, it's true insofar as you choose to trust Shin Dong-Hyuk's possibly unreliable narration (and it's clear Harden, a journalist, has his doubts in spots). It's harrowing and horrifying, to put it mildly. Shin was raised in circumstances designed to break down all the natural social and familial bonds, so he never learned trust, compassion, sympathy, and the like as a child. It's clear he's trying as an adult living in America and South Korea, but I finished the book by no means certain he'd ever figure it out.

41) The French Revolution: A Very Short Introduction, by William Doyle.

A quick, high-level overview of the French Revolution, but it's not at all simple--it's not the kind of thing I'd recommend to someone with no familiarity with the period, but it was a good refresher.

42) A Plague of Zombies, by Diana Gabaldon.

The newest novella featuring Lord John Grey set in the Outlander world. While it's not the strongest of the novellas, Lord John has become my favorite character in the entire series, so I enjoyed his latest adventure quite a bit. As you'd expect from the title, it does indeed have zombies (in 1761 in Jamaica), in a revenge plot that Lord John is ultimately able to untangle before it becomes an outright bloodbath.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

2013 Reading, Books 37-39

37) Things I Can't Forget, by Miranda Kenneally.

I've been a Kenneally fan ever since I read the query letter for her first YA romance, Catching Jordan, (her agent posted it on a blog as an example of an effective query), but I think this book may be my favorite so far just because I identified with the heroine so much. I've been told that's a simplistic reason to enjoy a book, but oh well. I was Kate when I was 18, and for several years afterward. Painfully good, afraid to break the rules, convinced that my beliefs were the only right ones and therefore pretty dang judgmental even if I was better than Kate at keeping my mouth shut about it. So I enjoyed watching Kate begin to come to terms with life's complexities and ambiguities, and I loved seeing a character like her (and my younger self) grow and change.

38) Consider the Fork, by Bee Wilson.

If you enjoy culinary history or the history of everyday things, you'll probably love this book. It's a history not of what we eat, but of the technology we use to prepare and consume our food, from pots to refrigerators to the kitchen space itself. It's too general an overview if you're looking for, say, what a French kitchen was like in 1780, but it's packed with fascinating anecdotes, and it made me think about any number of things I usually take for granted.

39) Lord Roworth's Reward, by Carola Dunn.

This is a sequel to Miss Jacobson's Journey, which I read earlier in the year. It's a sweet, chaste traditional Regency romance set during and immediately after the Waterloo campaign and featuring a hero who's so sure he's found his perfect future countess that he doesn't notice just how much love is involved in his friendship for another, less suitable, young lady until it's almost too late. I enjoyed it a lot, with two small caveats: 1) The sheer number of famous Waterloo quotes and incidents referenced in the story came across as a bit of an infodump, especially since the hero heard about most of them secondhand and they weren't necessary to move the plot forward. 2) The story treats the urban legend that Nathan Mayer Rothschild used his advance knowledge of the outcome of the battle to make a fortune on the London stock exchange as fact, when actually there's no contemporary evidence for it and it seems to be an anti-Semitic tale that sprang up later in the 19th century. That said, a lot of histories cite it as fact, Dunn herself clearly isn't anti-Semitic, and Rothschild is portrayed in a positive light. So I don't hold it against her--I just feel compelled to point out the issue, since I'm pedantic like that, especially given the roots of this particular legend.

Monday, April 22, 2013

Random Cookbook of the Week - The Gourmet Cookie Book

I'm more of a cook than a baker, so I was a bit dismayed when this week I drew The Gourmet Cookie Book: The Single Best Recipe From Each Year, 1941-2009. It's what it sounds like--one cookie recipe from each year of Gourmet's existence. It's fascinating to browse, since you can see how fashions in sweet treats changed over the decades, but since this is Gourmet we're talking about, many of the recipes are dauntingly complex.

I toyed with picking a recipe based on a significant year--my birthday, my husband's or daughter's, the year we married, etc. However, those years' cookies either looked beyond my skills or out of synch with my tastes, so I settled on the 1950 recipe.

Chocolate Wafers

- 3/4 c. butter
- 1 1/4 c. sugar
- 1 T. rum extract (I used 2 tsp. rum)
- 1 egg
- 1 1/2 c. sifted flour
- 3/4 c. cocoa powder
- 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/4 tsp salt

Cream butter, gradually add sugar, and cream together till light and fluffy. Add rum extract and egg and beat thoroughly. Sift together dry ingredients, then add to the wet ingredients gradually, mixing well after each addition. Roll the dough out 1/8 inch thickness on a lightly floured board and cut it with a floured cookie cutter into rounds about 2 1/2 inches in diameter. Place the rounds on an ungreased baking sheet in a 375 F oven and bake for 8 minutes.

I did fine with this recipe until the time came to roll the dough. On the advice of notes at the bottom of the recipe, I'd chilled it overnight in the fridge, and it was far too stiff to flatten out as much as needed. So I ended up rolling it into balls and pressing into rounds by hand. Not as pretty and uniform, but they baked up just fine:

This is a seriously rich and chocolatey cookie. I think I'd like it better if it were a bit lighter--more buttery, and with vanilla instead of rum, maybe. Which didn't stop me from eating half a dozen or so, however...

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

2013 TBR Challenge - The Midwife

The April theme for the 2013 TBR Challenge was New-to-You Author. I had many choices on my Kindle, given that when I first got one, I went on sort of a mini-binge scooping up romance bargains that I never actually got around to reading. Given how indiscriminate this buying binge was, I had several false starts the first week of April. For the first three books, I made myself read a chapter or two to give the stories a fair chance, but ended up rejecting them for, in order, an overly florid writing style, a hero who struck me as not just needing reform but inherently shallow and misogynistic, and having every single character feel more like a stereotype than a person.

Next I tried a more recent acquisition, The Midwife, by Carolyn Davidson. It's a 1999 release, but newish as an ebook, part of the Harlequin Treasury collection.

Although the book didn't bowl me over, I enjoyed it, in large part because it's a quiet, subtle story with an unusual setting. There's nothing splashy or over-the-top about it, with the possible exception of some secrets in the heroine's past, but they were handled deftly. The hero was a fairly prosperous farmer, not a duke or a cowboy with a past. Aside from a fistfight or two, there wasn't any violence to be found. Rather than the Wild Wild West or the Highlands (Home of the Kilted!) or Glamorous London, it was set in Minnesota in the 1890s, with hardworking Scandinavians everywhere you look. And I liked that. Not that there's anything wrong with big stories or the standard settings (says the Regency author), but it's just so nice to settle in with a book that doesn't fit the mold.

Really, I do wish there was more variety in historical romance settings. Maybe I'm an unusually omnivorous reader--I certainly meet readers online who never read outside the romance genre, never tire of Regencies and Victorians, and can never have too many dukes. And, let me stress, everyone should read what they like without any guilt, and without me or anyone else telling them they should make different choices. Most of us are super-busy people who read to relax, and if what relaxes you is a steady diet of two 19th century dukes per week, that's absolutely what you should choose. Maybe one of these days I might even write a duke myself, and I do have a wealthy, handsome viscount you might enjoy. But one of the things that gives me pleasure as a reader is getting mental vacations to a variety of times and places. In romance, I like the balance of knowing I'm getting a love story with a happy ending while seeing that played out across a variety of times, places, and character types, and I wish that variety was easier to find.

Incidentally, I've also challenged myself to read at least one finalist from each category of the 2013 Ritas. If you're interested, I blogged about Best First Book here.

Monday, April 15, 2013

A Dream Defiant - now available for preorder on Amazon!

I still don't have a cover for my July 29 release, A Dream Defiant, but it's now available for preorder on Amazon.

Spain, 1813 
Elijah Cameron, the son of runaway slaves, has spent his whole life in the British army proving that a black man can be as good a soldier as a white man. After a victory over the French, Elijah promises one of his dying men that he will deliver a scavenged ruby necklace to his wife, Rose, a woman Elijah has admired for years. 
Elijah feels bound to protect her and knows a widow with a fortune in jewels will be a target. Rose dreams of using the necklace to return to England, but after a violent attack, she realizes that she needs Elijah's help to make the journey safely. 
Her appreciation for Elijah's strength and integrity soon turns into love, but he doubts she could want a life with him, knowing the challenges they'd face. As their relationship grows, she must convince Elijah that she wants him as more than a bodyguard. And she must prove that their love can overcome all obstacles, no matter the color of their skin. 
28,000 words
I'll post the cover as soon as I get it. Also, Amazon always posts books for preorder way ahead of anyone else, but like my other books, this will be available wherever ebooks are sold in due course.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

2013 Reading, Books 34-36

34) Ghost Planet, by Sharon Lynn Fisher. Part of my Rita-finalist reading project, and already blogged about here.

35) Race, Sex, and Social Order in Early New Orleans, by Jennifer Spear.

Friday night I left this book on the dining room table while I was getting dinner ready, and as I brought my 9-year-old daughter's plate to the table, she looked at me in some indignation and pointed to the book. I got it from the University of Washington library, and it's in the dullest academic binding imaginable, with no cover image at all. So I asked her what was wrong, and she pointed more specifically to the word "Sex" printed on the spine. I informed her that in this case "sex" just meant gender, whether you're a man or a woman, and that the book was about how being male or female and the color of your skin impacted your life in 18th century New Orleans. At that point she looked suitably bored.

That said, the book didn't bore me. It covers how interracial relationships evolved and how they were conceptualized from New Orleans' earliest years on into the mid-19th century, an extremely relevant topic for my current work-in-progress set in 1815, whose heroine is a mixed-race fourth generation native of the city. However, it is a dryly academic work that assumes its reader has a decent grounding in the city's colonial history, so it's hardly a general-interest book.

36) Hominids, by Robert J. Sawyer.

A fascinating science fiction novel wherein, in a parallel world, Neanderthals rather than Homo sapiens are the sole surviving hominids. Neanderthal physicist Ponter Boddit accidentally passes through a portal to our Earth, leading to parallel plots as our world tries to figure out what to make of him (and he, of us) and his family and friends try to figure out what happened to him--his partner is accused of murder. I read the book in one sitting this morning, and I'll definitely get the sequel. That said, I thought the Neanderthal society was almost too ideal to be believed, in contrast to our species' warring, overpopulating, and environment-degrading ways, and I thought the use of rape as a plot device was much too heavy-handed. (One of the major Homo sapiens characters is raped by a stranger early in the book, in a scene graphic enough that I expect it would be triggering for quite a few readers.)

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Susanna reads the Ritas: Best First Book

A few weeks ago Romance Writers of America announced the 2013 finalists for the Rita awards. I judged four entries this year, and thought two of them so strong that I was disappointed not to see them among the finalists. And I was a bit dismayed to discover I hadn't read ANY of the books that made the cut.

I figured that as a romance author, I should educate myself about what a jury of my author peers has judged the best the genre had to offer in 2012. I'm not going to read ALL the finalists. I counted 81 on the list, and I'm just too busy between the day job and my own writing commitments to take that on. In a typical year I finish about 100-125 books, not counting re-reads, and I'd like to leave a certain amount of room for books chosen just because they sound cool or intriguing or are the latest release by a beloved author, you know?

So I'm going to read one book per category, one category per month. There are 11 categories, so I should finish up just in time to see how many of the 2014 finalists I've read...

Since alphabetical is good an order as any, I started with the finalists for Best First Book and chose Ghost Planet, by Sharon Lynn Fisher. I enjoyed it, though the romance is better developed than the science fiction premise. It's not that I'm asking for plausible science, per se--I was happy with the premise that a newly discovered barren world was spontaneously generating an Earthlike environment, even down to Earth life forms that hadn't been imported there, and intrigued that it went as far as providing each human with a "ghost"--a corporeal revenant of some dead person from their past. It's the kind of premise I'd expect for, say, a Star Trek: Next Gen episode, and I loved Next Gen. No, my only problem was that after setting up such a cool premise, the second half of the book is almost all romance and action plot, when I would've liked a little more exploration of the wonder of seeing a fresh, unpolluted Earth springing to life and more exploration of the philosophical issues and long-term implications of the ghosts. E.g. if a ghost is killed, it comes back, at least if its human host still lives--what are the limitations of that? Will they age normally and die natural deaths? Will the planet be swamped by colonists hoping to get their dead children/lovers/etc., and how will that shape the society? Can the ghosts visit Earth? If they do, will they still regenerate if killed? At least at this point there's no sequel in the works, so the loose ends that bugged me won't be tied anytime soon. That said, I do think this is an excellent debut, and I can definitely see myself reading more books by Fisher.

Next month, Contemporary Single Title.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Random Cookbook of the Week: New Covent Garden Soup Company's Book of Soups

As I may have mentioned here, Mr. Fraser and I met in England, though we're both American, as part of a volunteer program that placed young adults from around Europe in North America in various British nonprofits. During our year there he picked up The New Covent Garden Soup Company's Book of Soups. To date I've tried two recipes from it, and both turned out winners, so it qualifies for me as a cookbook deserving more attention.

This weekend I made...

Grandad Elf's Spring Herb Soup

25 g (1 oz) butter
1 large onion, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, crushed
1 stick celery, finely chopped
110 g (4 oz) lentils
1.2 liters (2 pints) vegetable stock (I made a homemade batch)
225 g (8 oz) fresh spinach
1 T each chopped Italian parsley, chives, tarragon, thyme, and marjoram 
1 t lemon juice
150 ml (1/4 pint) Greek yogurt
salt & freshly ground black pepper

Melt the butter and cook the onion, garlic, and celery gently for a few minutes in a covered saucepan, without coloring. Add the lentils and stir to coat well. Add the stock, cover, bring to a boil and simmer for about 20-30 minutes until the lentils are soft. Reserving 1 t. of the chopped herbs for garnish, add the spinach and remaining herbs to the soup and cook for 1 minute until the spinach has wilted. Cool a little, then puree the soup along with the lemon juice and most of the yogurt, reserving 6 t. of the yogurt and the remainder of the chopped herbs for garnish.

This was a nice recipe, not the best thing I've ever made, but a bright, springlike soup that even with all the chopping time involved was quick and straightforward to make. I forgot to take a picture, unfortunately.

Sunday, April 7, 2013

2013 Reading, Books 31-33

31) The Generals: American Military Command from World War II to Today, by Thomas Ricks.

I caught part of an author interview on NPR and determined to read this book, even though in general the second half of the 20th century isn't a corner of history that holds much interest for me. (Part of that is because it doesn't really seem like history--I was born in 1971, so I remember world events from, oh, 1979 or so on pretty clearly, albeit with the skewed perspective of having been a kid and therefore having absorbed unquestioningly my family and community's beliefs until I left home at 18.)

I'm glad I made the effort to read it. I feel like I have a much better understanding of the Korean and Vietnam Wars, which I've never much studied, and even of the First and Second Gulf Wars and the war in Afghanistan, which I lived through as an adult but focused on the politics rather than how effective the military was and what caused its weaknesses.

To sum up very succinctly, the WWII US Army was about as effective as an army could be, largely due to the leadership of Marshall and Eisenhower. But it imploded quickly, with the nadir of Vietnam, largely because of failures of leadership--the Army tended to award organization men who knew how to go along to get along rather than thoughtful, assertive leaders who understood strategy and where each war fit into national and world interest, and they failed to quickly relieve generals who couldn't hack it. After Vietnam the Army recovered tactically, such that the enlisted personnel and lower-ranking officers are excellent, but the system is still largely failing to produce gifted strategists to fill the rank of general.

Definitely a worthwhile read for anyone interested in military history or who wants to look at the last 60-70 years from another angle.

32) The Midwife, by Carolyn Davidson. My April read for Wendy the Super Librarian's 2013 TBR challenge. More detail to come April 17.

33) Suffering Succotash: A Picky Eater's Quest to Understand Why We Hate the Foods We Hate, by Stephanie V.W. Lucianovic.

I'm a recovering picky eater. As a child, I practically lived on Campbell's Chunky Chicken Noodle Soup, fried chicken (only I mostly ate the crust and left the meat behind), black-eyed peas (but all other legumes, especially lima beans, were GROSS), white bread wadded up into a ball (WHY, child me, WHY?), biscuits, chocolate milk, and a very narrow range of other foods. I still can't figure out how I managed to grow up 5'7" (average for a woman in my family), intelligent, and healthy rather than stunted, dull, and brittle-boned. Who knows? Maybe I was meant to be 6'0", have Nobel-prize-winner brains, and never to suffer from mild asthma. Or maybe the human body is more resilient than we generally think.

Now if anything I'm a foodie, though I still have some aversions I'm fighting to overcome--e.g. to me most fish has an off-puttingly squishy texture and tastes like a beach town smells on a hot, windless day--and I've decided I'm really not missing anything by avoiding brussel sprouts, asparagus, and desserts with raisins in them. I've never been tested for it, but given my dislike of coffee and beer (seriously, how can anyone stand anything that bitter?) I suspect I'm a supertaster. But within those constraints I'm an adventurous eater who'll try just about any cuisine, spice, or flavor combination.

And now I'm raising a picky 9-year-old. She's better than I was with fruits and vegetables--as long as they're raw and plain--but I worry how little protein she eats. She barely eats meat and doesn't like beans, which leaves her with peanut butter, yogurt, and milk. I want her to eat more variety so it'll be easier to feed her and take her to restaurants, and so she'll enjoy the pleasures of the table--and also because despite the fact she's tall for her age, has only had to stay home sick once this year, and just tested into the gifted program, I'm still afraid she'll turn up stunted, dull, and brittle-boned. I parent, therefore I worry.

This is more a light, quick read than an in-depth study with step-by-step recommendations for overcoming your own and your child's pickiness, but I liked its emphasis on never treating pickiness--your own or others'--as a character flaw. I mean, it's not like I find fish squishy and smelly on purpose, it just IS for me. I didn't choose my taste buds and my sense of smell any more than I chose to have brown eyes, straight hair, or astigmatism. It also made me realize how much of Miss Fraser's pickiness seems to be about control, so I'm going to phase out our one-bite rule, because she always and only takes one bite of ANYTHING not on her narrow preferred list. Even if she thinks it's OK, she never eats more. So I think that's control--we can make her eat one bite, but she won't let us convince her to LIKE cheese or steak or cooked broccoli or whatever. I think from now on we just put new foods on her plate along with at least one food we know she'll eat, even if that's just a slice of wheat bread or a handful of cherry tomatoes, and talk about the meal, how it was cooked, and how it tastes to us. When she's ready, she'll try more. If health becomes an issue, that's a different story, but for now her picky diet seems to be enough to keep her growing, and slightly on the slim side but not unhealthily thin, so I should probably worry less. (Heh. Yeah, right.)

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Random Cookbook is back! The Best Recipes in the World

Even though I'm still busier than usual, I decided I missed randomly cooking. All work and no play and all that.

So, this week I drew The Best Recipes in the World, by Mark Bittman, wherein he offers a sampling of recipes from the great world cuisines made accessible for the home cook. (It's a long cookbook.)

Busy as I am, I wanted something with a nice short ingredient list, so I selected...

Chicken With Vinegar
(A French peasant classic, though Bittman cut the butter content from a whole stick to two measly tablespoons plus an optional extra.)

- 2 T butter or olive oil (I used butter)
- 1 chicken, 3-4 lbs, cut into serving pieces, or 2 1/2 to 3 lbs chicken parts, trimmed of excess fat (I used ~2.5 lbs of drumsticks and thighs)
- Salt and black pepper to taste
- 1/4 c. minced shallot
- 1 c. good-quality red wine vinegar
- 1 T butter, optional (I exercised the option)

Preheat the oven to 450 F. Set a large skillet, preferably with steep sides, over medium-high heat. Add 2 T butter and wait a minute. When it is good and hot, place the chicken in the skillet, skin side down. Cook undisturbed for about 5 minutes, or until the chicken is nicely browned. Turn and cook for three minutes on the other side. Season with salt and pepper.

(I did this step in two batches, because even though all the pieces fit in my skillet, I didn't want to brown them all at once because the pan would've been too crowded and they wouldn't have had as much of a Maillard reaction.)

Place the chicken in the oven. Cook 15-20 minutes, or until it is just about done (the juices will run clear, and there will be the barest trace of pink near the bone). Transfer the chicken to an ovenproof platter and place the platter in the oven; turn off the oven and leave the door slightly ajar.

Pour most but not all of the cooking juices out of the skillet. Place the skillet over medium-high heat and add the shallot, sprinkle with a little salt and pepper and cook, stirring until tender, about 2 minutes. Add the vinegar and raise the heat to high. Cook for a minute or two, or until the powerful smell has subsided somewhat. Add 1/2 c. water and cook for another 2 minutes, stirring, until the mixture is slightly reduced and somewhat thickened. Stir in butter if desired.

Return the chicken and any accumulated juices to the skillet and turn the chicken in the sauce. Serve immediately.

Not too exciting to look at, but this is a very good recipe--straightforward and simple but with a distinctive, interesting taste. I bet it'd be AMAZING with the full stick of butter, but I'm on Weight Watchers (I've lost 25 lbs since December 1!), so I should probably stick to this version.