A Whole Lotta Chew

So, I bought this big hunka chicken bag at Whole Foods with individual chicken breasts in it for like eight bucks.


In theory, a great idea. But….the back of the bag said to microwave the frozen chicken for 8 minutes and then flip over and micro again for another 3 minutes. I followed the directions perfectly and my chicken turned into a shoe. Seriously. It was like eating chicken jerky, as gross as that sounds. I sat chewing on one piece for like five minutes. It could have been really really yummy—with roasted garlic marinara sauce and real buffalo mozzarella broiled on it….but it was as tough as leather. I’m stubborn, didn’t want to spend time to make a whole other dinner and hate wasting food, so I tried to eat as much as I could anyways. I couldn’t finish it because it was just too tough though :(. Oh well, I guess I know next time not to follow the directions and keep temping it throughout the micro process. Meh.


Other than the leather shoe (which is now a rock at the bottom of my stomach and I’m now popping Tums), my dinner was amazing because of the leftover sweet potato risotto. Seriously, I had been thinking about this risotto all day long and it was just as good today with a quick reheat. This has gotta be my new favorite risotto recipe ever. Very very yumm! I also had a salad with some carrot sticks drizzled with balsamic vinegar. And…….I made it up to myself with a piece of dark chocolate for dessert.

For a snack (I’m and I’m sure I’ll need it because I didn’t finish my dinner) I’m bringing a drool-worthy banana Balance bar. LOVE this flavor!


And major props to my lentils and rice, which was anything but boring today for lunch! It was very satisfying (and spicy with all that cayenne and sriracha!!) and kept me feeling good all afternoon. The almond butter packet worked like a charm as well, except I couldn’t get the last bit of it out on my apple so I resorted to sucking it and just eating it out of the tube. Hopefully no one saw that.

I’ve got a strict timeline for the night and plan to stick to it. Lots of intricate detail work tonight as I cut, ice and decorate my petit fours and glaze my opera torte. I also have to bake off my madelines and bake and fill my linzer cookies. It will be a full night for sure!

oh—and my butt is so incredibly sore today from my lower body workout yesterday that everytime I sit down, I cry a little inside. Those deadlifts really get ya. Everytime. 

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  • BethT
    August 5, 2008 at 9:36 pm

    I used to buy a similar frozen product and always cooked it in the overn 🙁 Sorry, not as fast but the quality is SOOO much better. My hubby would make a few on Sunday to have during the week to save time.

  • jenna
    August 5, 2008 at 9:40 pm

    I ALWAYS cook everything in the oven but decided just this once to try the microwave. Never ever again!!! Sometimes old fashioned is better I guess!

  • kasondra
    August 5, 2008 at 9:51 pm

    I love your web site!! i just wanted to say what a difference it has made in my life, i actually just started a bog of my own. i am an occupational therapist and fitness instructor, i have been struggling with an ED for the past 1.5 years
    Everyone please check it out to show some support and bare with my while i get it up and running. i am devoting it to the eating disordered population. i also want to focus on the whole mind-body-spirit connection and mindfulness. so if you get a free minute please check it out.

  • Melissa
    August 5, 2008 at 10:18 pm

    Hey Jenna, quick question about the kale chips. I made them yesterday, and about 30 minutes after they came out of the oven I put them in a tupperware. I pulled the container out today to have some and noticed it looked like they had sunk down a lot. I took a bite, only to find them totally soggy and not crunchy at all. Any idea what went wrong? Do you think I could put them back in the oven for a bit to crisp them up again?

  • C
    August 5, 2008 at 10:20 pm

    Sorry about the chicken. I have never tried it in the micro and with this post under my belt, I never will! Good luck with your petit fours and torte!

  • LadyLara
    August 5, 2008 at 10:29 pm

    Hey Jenna,

    You might want to try nuking one of those breasts loosely wrapped in Saran Wrap. I find it preserves the juices. The technique weirds some people out though!

    And Melissa, I’ve made the kale chips but I don’t think they are the kind of food that “keeps.”

  • ModelBehavior
    August 5, 2008 at 10:33 pm

    Hey Jenna, I buy frozen chicken breasts and just throw them on a stove top or in the oven just like fresh chicken, I don’t thaw them or anything, it takes a little longer but they taste exactly the same! Otherwise the cheese buffalo sauce combo sounds amazing!

  • Ana
    August 5, 2008 at 10:36 pm

    yeah, microwaving chicken evaporates any moisture in the breast: result is a brick, like u described! lol!

    as for kale chips: those greens won’t keep and i would NOT try to crisp them again-just a precaution ^_^

  • smjohnson30
    August 5, 2008 at 11:07 pm

    the lentils and rice you had earlier looked great; i used to love that combination that they made at my college’s dining hall…i really should whip up a batch!

    the deadlifts are great! for the hamstrings and lower back; i’ve read/heard that women have weaker hamstrings so this is a good exercise to incorporate to help strengthen them up and prevent future knee/back injuries 🙂 keep up the good work!

  • Juli
    August 5, 2008 at 11:27 pm

    Hi Jenna! I’m a first time commenter, but long time reader. I have 2 questions for you:

    1) I’ve been hearing from a lot of people that the elliptical is a better workout (i.e. burns more calories) than the treadmill. Is this true? Personally, I feel like running on the treadmill is a whole lot harder than the elliptical.

    2) What are dead lifts? I’m intrigued!

  • alicia
    August 5, 2008 at 11:53 pm

    My hamstrings have been so sore since yoga on sunday and a run on monday. I could definitely feel them when I went to the gym for weights yesterday and all the leg exercises felt tougher than usual. So I understand how your butt must feel. 🙂

    Good luck for tonight and sorry to hear about leather chicken. lol. Have fun:)

  • Alison
    August 6, 2008 at 12:02 am

    Jenna, I laughed out loud when you said you cry a little inside from the pain of the deadlifts. Ha! I would love a video of your arm and leg exercises because I’m not sure what you mean by some of them. I loved the ab video and I’ve started adding some of your moves to my routine. Thanks!

  • Gale
    August 6, 2008 at 12:03 am

    Hi Jenna (and anyone else who can chime in),

    You have such nice skin and I was wondering if you could share your skincare regimen? My skin is usually pretty clear, but lately it has been acting up on occasion and my makeup to cover the problem is only making it worse. Any advice?!

    Thanks 🙂

  • Allyson
    August 6, 2008 at 1:18 am

    Sorry to hear about your chicken!

    Not to sound weird, but I love when I’m that sore! It means I worked really hard the day before 🙂

  • LT
    August 6, 2008 at 1:26 am

    Are you sure it didn’t say to nuke on medium power?? I’ve done that before a few times.

  • Grounded Fitness
    August 6, 2008 at 1:43 am

    dead lifts are brutal.

    and my george foreman grill does the same thing to chicken. its ok for hamburger patties, but anything else is like leather.


  • Meghan
    August 6, 2008 at 1:44 am

    My boyfriend has such a typical “guy” recipe using frozen chicken and the microwave but it’s actually quite tasty and turns out well every time! Microwavable container w/ lid + marinade + frozen chicken + microwave = deliciousness.

  • caitlinbo (see bride run)
    August 6, 2008 at 2:17 am

    rock on for your cookies!! i want to try one!

    that chicken sounds seriously digusting. what if you bake it instead of microwaving?

    lol the note about the dead lifts cracked me up.

  • Rose
    August 6, 2008 at 2:52 am

    I’ve run into the same problem with chicken – even with simple defrosting before baking. What’s with the microwave?

    The term deadlift alone makes me tired….

  • runjess
    August 6, 2008 at 2:55 am

    Ewww…can you thaw those first? If not, I would just throw them in a hot skillet to cook.

  • HangryPants
    August 6, 2008 at 2:58 am

    Woah if you’re that sore, I need to get on those deadlifts.

  • jenna
    August 6, 2008 at 3:10 am


    They really don’t keep. Usually, what I do is bake them at 350 for like 10 minutes and they are very crisp and I just shove them all in my mouth so I never have leftovers. Humidity also probably helped them become soggy. My advice is to just make what you can eat! Mmmm now I want some too….


    There are 2 schools of thought on this subject. The ellipical is better for people that are either old and or overweight because it gets their entire body in motion. However, running it is proven that you burn more calories. I’ve always been told that running is better. I mean, how can you deny getting a good workout when you are running sprints? When i used to run up to 10 miles in training for races last year I would burn on average like 600-700 calories per training session. Elliptical is sort of what I want to do when I feel like I need to slack off. I guess you could push yourself on it, but running to me is what really gets me every time.

    Deadlifts: Stand with your feet shoulder width apart, knees slightly bent and hold a pair of dumbbells in front of you with a wide overhand grip (I use 20 in each hand). Draw your shoulders back and tighten your core. Squat towards the floor with your weight in your heels and keep your back straight and your shoulders pulled up. When the dumbbells almost hit the floor, stand back up. Visit this site:



    Haha thanks! I actually use a face cleanser that my dermatologist prescribed to me because I was having trouble with during the past two years. I always always ALWAYS use Ole Henrikson spf 30 sunscreen on my face every morning after I wash it and I use Bare Minerals make up everyday. I also use an Ole Henrikson mask about twice a week.


    Another video is in the works……stay tuned!!

    I AM NEVER COOKING CHICKEN (OR ANYTHING) IN THE MICROWAVE AGAIN!!!!! That piece of shoe is still sitting like a rock in my stomach and I ate over 6 hours ago. Bleh.

  • Christy
    August 6, 2008 at 11:35 pm

    Hi Jenna,

    I would suggest putting a piece of Reynolds Wax/Parchment paper on top of the chickens. Microwave for 2-3 minutes. Then pull back the wax paper, drizzle a little soy sauce on top of the chickens, recover and nuke again until cooked. It’s definitely not like in the oven, but when you are in a hurry, this works perfect! I do this when I am making my lunch and forgot to defrost it the night before! 😉

    Good luck