Roasted Pepper and Tomato Sauce

I forgot how peaceful it is to go fishing.

I think a lot of us sometimes get a little caught up in how frustrating the thought of fishing can be – just the idea of it makes me cringe with impatience.

We forget how peaceful it is: to be surrounded by a vast, still lake, a gentle wind carrying the chirps of nearby birds and the ruffling of leaves, the smell of a campfire, bug spray, and sweet nature.

The serenity of waiting, and observing, and being mindful.

Mindfulness: “a mental state achieved by focusing one’s awareness on the present moment, while calmly acknowledging and accepting one’s feelings, thoughts, and bodily sensations, used as a therapeutic technique.”

I’m sure most of you don’t even know you’re being mindful when fishing. But it’s absolutely happening as you sit there on the edge of sheer chance, anticipation is more of a relaxed excitement.

It’s calming, it’s rejuvenating, and when you see that little sunfish wag its tail on into your kid’s toy of a net, it is pure joy.

Onto other simple pleasures: homemade tomato sauce. A good sauce is fresh, and its thoughtful, and it’s authentically-chunky. This sauce is my new absolutely favorite. It’s easy and bursting with flavor, and I could literally eat it on anything and for every meal.

For the sauce:

  • 5 Roma tomatoes
  • 1 jar roasted peppers (yellow and red)
  • About ten basil leaves
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • Salt & pepper
  • Goat cheese, if desired

Turn the oven to broil and roast tomatoes, sprinkled with olive oil, salt and pepper, for about 15 min.
Once roasted, remove skin and add to blender with peppers and garlic. Pulse until chunky sauce is formed.

Heat olive oil in a deep pan and pour in pepper and tomato mixture, mix in basil and herbs. Bring to a boil, add salt and pepper (and garlic powder if needed), and sprinkle in goat cheese.

For the chicken:

  • 2 chicken breasts
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp red pepper
  • 1 egg, whisked
  • 1/2 cup breadcrumbs
  • 1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese

Mix the flour, paprika, garlic powder, and red pepper. Coat the chicken in the flour mixture, then in the (separate) whisked egg mixture, then in the (separate) breadcrumbs and cheese mixture. Heat olive oil over medium heat and place chicken in. It’s done once crispy and golden brown.

Place chicken beside a bed of zoodles and pour a generous amount of the the sauce over the plate. Slurp dat goodness up and never underestimate the power of basil..

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