Tuesday, July 15, 2008

BE BRAVE: Day 8: Chicken Marsala and Endorphins

Yesterday was my BE BRAVE Day 8 and I pushed myself to make Chicken Marsala. Part of the reason was that I love anything Marsala, but we always eat it out. I've had the recipe but have been procrastinating about making it for weeks---anticipating the "huge" amount of work and not having much cook-confidence, etc. LoveHubbie is a very good Southern cook with extremely high expectations, and I wanted to try this new recipe and have us enjoy a delicious Chicken Marsala at home---for the first time.

A few weeks ago I made the seasoned bread crumbs in the oven from gluten-free bread. I bought all fresh and organic ingredients. Most were local, too, like the shitake and portabello mushrooms. Lastly, I bought the organic chicken; the chicken's diminishing freshness was the urgency factor that made it my BE BRAVE action yesterday. The eggs were from our chickens. I worked for about five hours in my hot kitchen on it. I wanted to take a picture of it, but was too hot and drained and spent by the end. It wasn't pretty and didn't really go well. Dinner was very late, and it was much, much too salty for me to eat (but perfect for LoveHubbie who enjoys things especially salty). He thought it was okay overall; however, he needed to add lots of sugar (as though it were a bowl of cereal) to his completed meal for it to taste good in his estimation.

Still, there was a sense of accomplishment in making Chicken Marsala imperfectly. I did it. And not really badly, nor well---just imperfectly. I did something hard for me! I knew I risked LoveHubbie's criticism, but did it anyway because for me, the gift was more important than the perfection of the food. I gave it from my heart.

The picture is from chickenmarsala.net. In hindsight, I think it was a bit overambitious as a BE BRAVE action for me just now, but I'm still glad I tried.

On another note, I felt like myself for a few minutes yesterday. I had a very intense gyrotonics session. I wrote more about me and gyrotonics here. It is hard for my large body to get through enough sustained strenuous work to produce endorphins, but I know I did yesterday. I felt like myself and felt so good. It passed in an hour or so, but I was glad to feel so wonderful. It shows me that what makes me me is still in there somewhere and not gone forever. With this depression recovery, I hope to keep uncovering it.

Glimpses of happiness and self-remembering and the memories of both are great motivation for keeping on...


thailandchani said...

I would be willing to bet the chicken tasted great. I honestly believe that if you do something expecting perfection, you will make yourself unhappy. The real point is that you did something nice for your husband and enjoyed trying. That's all that matters. :)

Gyrotonics sounds very interesting. I'm going to follow up on that.


Olivia said...

Yes, Chani, of course you're right! I am a recovering perfectionist, and at times I so struggle with it. And I agree that all that matters is the gift I wanted to give. :)

Gyrotonics is amazing. There isn't a lot of info out there about it. It's all about moving in a cyclical manner, and it's one on one with a trainer. I truly need this, and interestingly, I find her encouragement lasts throughout the week. I hear her saying "Good job, Olivia!" or "Way to go, Olivia" as I master very, very small things. There is a mind-body aspect too that I enjoy. Much, much better than therapy and cheaper, too!

Thanks, Chani :)



Leah said...

good for you for giving it a go! i bet it was great. trying a new recipe is definitely a brave act (i know it is for me.) how awesome that you were able to use eggs from your own chickens. that's so cool!

Olivia said...

Thanks, Leah :) Definitely creative, too!! Peace, O xxoo

yertle said...

How exciting! It is better to do something imperfectly than to not do it at all. That is the key to getting out of my perfectionist trap that keeps me from being brave sometimes. Thanks, I needed that.

Olivia said...

yertle, I so agree. I think it is good to do lots of things that you're "just okay" at, or even lousy at just to stay out of the perfectionist trap. At least that's what I'm determined to try! Peace and acceptance, O

Kim Mailhot said...

We perfectionist need to be more gentle with ourselves ! How great that you tried something new ! How it turned out is really beside the point ! But what you learned along the way... ah that is the point !

So glad you enjoyed my beautiful things today !
Cheers and blessings,

Angela said...

I love chicken marsala - good be brave project.

Jane said...

Oh my heaven, O!!!! That dish sounds amazing. I can't encourage you enough to just dig in to the kitchen and create. For me, I found such a sense of creativity through my cooking. It's not even about eating it either. It's about the textures and colors and endless photo ops. I just renamed my food blog to "Three Hail Marys and a bowl of cherries" since I still find myself throwing up a few prayers every time I get in to the kitchen! LOL!

Kikipotamus said...

That was very brave.

Olivia said...

Thank you so much, Kim, Angela, Jane, and Kelly!

Jane, I'm far from where you are with gorgeous pictures, a dedicated blog, and oodles of creativity...still, your point is well-taken in that it's not just in the eating, and there is such an opportunity for creativity.

Blessings and peace tonight to all,