Some seriously crazy shit went down in my spinning class today.
This particular spinning studio has tons of windows and a door that look out onto Highland Boulevard in the heart of Hollywood. So as you're
being tortured spinning, you can see people walking/driving/staggering/uniycling/rollerblading by, staring/gaping/ogling/pointing/laughing. You feel like a zoo resident. Usually the teacher just turns the fans on and keeps the door shut, thereby keeping the crazies outside but occasionally it becomes so sweltering that the door to the world gets propped open. And you never know what you're gonna get.
Today, during a particularly punishing climb, a potentially drunk homeless person took two sheepish steps into the small room. I looked to the teacher, who had his back to the door (and was therefore unaware), and signaled him with my tilty head and bug eyes as if to say, "DUDE. We have a SITUATION!" The teacher quickly hopped off his bike and approached him as one would a wild animal (crouching down with hands raised, freaked out but attempting to appear in control), and gently shooed him out of the room.
Shortly thereafter, more crazy stuff ensued:
- An unattended miniature dachshund popped his head and half of his wiener-body in the door before his human intervened.
- The girl next to me nearly fell off her bike when her shoe came unattached to the pedal in dramatic fashion.
- Another woman got off her bike to blow her nose with one of the sanitizing gym-equipment wet wipes.
And throughout all of this, several men dressed as priests walked past the window to what I'm hoping was the casting office next door.
What is happening???
It's nuts out there in the world and sometimes you need some normal (but delicious) comfort food to quell the craziness. And the only thing crazy about this chicken is that it is crazy-good (boo).
Bruschettaadapted from my brain
1 1/2 cups grape tomatoes, chopped and seeded (just squeeze them gently, no need to eliminate every seed)
5 T chiffonade-cut basil
1 clove garlic, minced
about 1T olive oil or to taste
good drizzle balsamic or to taste
freshly ground black pepper
Combine all ingredients and set aside.
Lemony Parmesan Chicken
adapted sorta-kinda from Ina Garten
2 chicken breasts, cut in half horizontally to make cutlets (4 total)
1/2 cup flour (I used whole wheat but all-purpose is great too)
zest and juice of one lemon
3/4 cup panko breadcrumbs (or regular breadcrumbs are fine. I like the ones with automatic Italian seasoning)
1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan
olive or canola oil for frying
4-6 cups arugula
extra lemon juice and olive oil
sea salt and cracked black pepper
Salt and pepper the chicken cutlets and set aside. Set up 3 low bowls in a row as follows:
1. flour + 1t salt + pepper to taste
2. egg (lightly beaten) + lemon juice
3. panko + parmesan + lemon zest
Heat a good amount (2T-ish) of oil over medium heat. Dredge the chicken first in the flour mixture (shaking to remove excess), then the egg mixture, then the panko mixture (pressing it on to adhere if necessary). When the pan is super hot but not smoking, fry the breaded chicken for about 4 minutes per side (depending on the thickness of your cutlets). Set aside.
For serving, divvy up the arugula amongst four plates. Dress the greens with a squeeze of lemon and a drizzle of olive oil, salt and pepper. Place a hot chicken cutlet on the salad and top with a generous amount of the bruschetta mixture.
I wish you a non-crazy and wonderful weekend!