Day 337: Spiced Roast Chicken, Baked Potatoes and Spaghetti Squash


I think I’m actually too tired to type. Got home from Vancouver at around 11 and Mike and I set to work prepping for foodstyling jobs I had this morning before and after CBC, and even for CBC we made 3 batches of Christmas cookies, including the holiday Stroopwafels Mike has adopted as his thing. (Recipe tomorrow, I promise.) Bed between 1 and 2, up at 6. My vocabulary seems to have reduced itself to around 20 or 30 words.

I ended up with no edible leftovers from the shows I pimped food for today, but at the same time was so behind at dinnertime that all I could muster was a chicken, patted dry and rubbed down with a paste made of canola oil, pressed garlic, smoked paprika, cumin and allspice and thrown in the oven to leave to its own devices. (And only because it had been displaced from the freezer, which is packed beyond overflowing, and needed to be cooked. Plus I was feeling like a bad and negligent mother/wife and tried to earn back some parenting points with roast chicken.) I poked a couple potatoes and tossed them on the oven rack alongside, and did the same with a spaghetti squash, cut in half. How is it that roast chicken and baked potatoes are among the lowest maintenance of dinners, and yet frozen fish sticks get all the credit in the convenience food department?

Also, these crazy Transilvania Puffs, which came from eastern Europe and I found at Illichmann’s Sausage Shop (just off 17th Ave. SE) and taste like swollen, less-salty popcorn twists that came from eastern Europe.

I can’t believe I’m into the final month, with under 30 days to go. I came to some conclusions regarding this blog, my dinners and how I might spend my time before bed next year, but it’s far too complex a thought for me to eloquently share at this time. Tomorrow.


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22 comments on “Day 337: Spiced Roast Chicken, Baked Potatoes and Spaghetti Squash

  1. jennifer
    December 3, 2008 at 5:28 am

    it is so funny how the foods that truly are the convenient ones are real food rather then the frozen ones the industry tries to sell us on. i think that people feel that in their busy schedules they cannot possibly make a real meal…but if they only knew how simple it is! and you are showing us just that! thanks julie!
    you are a workhorse!

  2. A
    December 3, 2008 at 6:25 am

    When I’m dead tired I throw together a bowl of cereal. Roast chicken with vegetables is not something i would have come up with. WOW

  3. Barb
    December 3, 2008 at 7:02 am

    WOW is right! You deserve a medal.

  4. Bonnie
    December 3, 2008 at 7:25 am

    Whatever your decision is for the new year, I want to thank you so much for the past year. You’ve inspired me many times when I’ve drawn a blank about what to cook next and you’ve shared some fantastic recipes with your faithful readers. We’ve lived vicariously through you on your incredible dining experiences and there have been many times I wish I lived in your town with its great shops and restaurants. The family stories have always been interesting and funny and watching W grow into the little foodie photog has been great. Thanks for everything Julie – it has been a lot of fun.

  5. JulieVR
    December 3, 2008 at 7:36 am

    There is no wow factor here – it was all driven by guilt, and I had this chicken that needed to be cooked or we’d have a really smelly garbage.

  6. Elaine
    December 3, 2008 at 7:58 am

    Oh my holy cow, Transylvania Puffs? Seeing and reading about that snack food may or may not be the best thing to happen to me today.

  7. JuneyB
    December 3, 2008 at 8:21 am

    My seester in Edmonton told me about your blog & I spent all day yesterday reading it. It’s really GREAT! I’m a transplanted Calgarian who moved to hell (Tucson) just in time for menopause! Boy, I’m sure homesick now! Comfort food has a whole new meaning here…yesterday it was 80 degrees, so dinner last night was a frisee’ salad with bacon,red onion, poached egg & a mustard vinaigrette. Tonight – chicken enchiladas with green chile verde – a take off on a Cooking Light recipe. Can’t wait to see what you’re cookin’ tomorrow!

  8. Heidi
    December 3, 2008 at 9:09 am

    Bravo and well done Julie; for the past 11 months and for the month to come.
    You’ve been an inspiration; not only for the recipes but for sharing your life with us and your extraordinary commitment to keeping this blog. May you live long and prosper…etc.
    In my house “convenience food” means eating directly out of a box or over the sink, it does not involve turning on an appliance.

  9. Melanie
    December 3, 2008 at 9:51 am

    My feelings echo those already written! Checking your blog has become part of my daily routine and always some part of my weekly menu. My friends laugh as they know that if they ask where I found the recipe, the answer is always, “Julie” – no further explanation required!
    Wherever the path takes you, thank you for the year of great reading, laughs, and recipes!

  10. Pauline
    December 3, 2008 at 10:18 am

    Julie I have to agree with all the comments here. It is something I really look forward to every day I am sure gonna miss this routine. Are you going to keep this site up or do I have to frantically start copying all your fab recipes. By the way your recent pasta recipe was to die for.

  11. Sue
    December 3, 2008 at 10:43 am

    I concur with all of the comments so far. Your blogs are a daily treat for me and you have inspired me to try many things I wouldn’t normally have thought I could. Just last week I made your baked penne and my husband LOVED it. Also, a few weeks ago, I left a chicken in the fridge and your Getting Started book out for my 18 year old son and when I got home from work the chicken was cooking in the oven and it was perfect. I too no longer need to explain who Julie is. I just say “you know, its one of Julie’s recipes”!! I hope you’re resting today. Looking forward to reading what your conclusions for this blog are going to be!!

  12. elektra
    December 3, 2008 at 11:28 am

    julie, i feel like i owe you a dinner for all the dinner ideas you’ve provided me! it’s the ideas i struggle with.

  13. Brigitte
    December 3, 2008 at 1:14 pm


  14. Sue
    December 3, 2008 at 3:01 pm

    Julie, I cannot agree more with the above comments. Your blog has provided me with way more than just dinner ideas…. it is my daily dose of humor and stress relief, and knowledge that other moms/wives are out there struggling with similar issues, and can actually laugh about it! Sometimes I have laughed so hard I have cried.
    Your blog has also helped me to become more creative with my cooking, and has become the first place I look for recipes. Our family have many “Julie favorites” now.
    Whatever you do, I wish you all the best. But I hope I will see much more of your writing in the future.
    If not, there may be a new condition noticed among women of childbearing years (or any age for that matter), called “Julie withdrawal”. 🙂

  15. angiebean
    December 3, 2008 at 3:13 pm

    I hope you turn this website into a book!

  16. Nancy
    December 3, 2008 at 6:03 pm

    Every night I sit down to see what you’ve cooked, lord knows how you do it. Thank goodness you have introduced us to some great restuarants too. Its a great read every day, with a giggle or two but I truly look forward to your site daily. Thanks so much, can hardly wait to see you in class in January.

  17. supersu
    December 3, 2008 at 7:17 pm


    just like everyone else i LOVE LOVE LOVE this blog….it is really one of the few things i do every day!

    thanks a lot, i’ll keep my fingers crossed that maybe we’ll have sunday dinner with julie in the new year….or some such new version

    get some sleep girl!

    su 🙂

  18. Lisette
    December 3, 2008 at 7:22 pm

    Thanks Julie for your constant source of inspiration – you are bookmarked as one of my favorites and enjoy checking out what you are up to as often as I can. Thanks again for the one smart cookie cookbook. It has been great bedtime reading and I look forward to trying many recipes.

  19. Laurene
    December 3, 2008 at 10:11 pm

    Geez, I must have missed the concept last night that this blog would be coming to an END. That’s so final, you know… I look forward to reading this every night & I just can’t imagine being without your wit & humor & stories about your hubbie & W & now Lou the dog to brighten my bedtime. Please!! Stick around & let us peek voyeuristically into your kitchen each day. It’s really interesting in there!

  20. Katharine
    December 4, 2008 at 2:53 pm

    Aw! Everyone’s been so sweet! Not only have you been a source of meal ideas for us, humour, and wealth of food knowlege, but we are all so very busy these days that it’s sometimes tough to catch up with eachother. This is such a great way for you to let us check into your life and see what you’ve been up to. – if we can’t seem to coordinate a playdate, or lunch, or whatever. Thank you for continuing to be the awesome, and hilarious person we love! xoxoxo

  21. Katharine
    December 4, 2008 at 6:28 pm

    BTW – my idea of quick and easy dinner is microwave popcorn! Bon appetite!

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