Don't be shocked or upset by that statement. It's the truth. As our first child, she gets the blunt end of our learning curve as parents. It's just a fact of life and sometimes it is a good thing, but often, it really does stink.
The more children you have and the more practice time you get as a parent, the more effective you become. You learn what battles are important. You learn which rules are essential. You learn how to keep your mouth closed.
To compensate for this lack of good parenting skills, I also believe that God blesses that first born child with extra natural abilities and character. So, in the end, it's all good! Right?!?
This week, I got a call from above-mentioned oldest child who is attending college. She was more than frustrated that the same day her younger brother passed his drivers test, he got to drive to school/practice. Apparently, a few years earlier when she was in that same situation, her mean old parents required her to wait 3 weeks before she was allowed to drive by herself.
My response? "I'm sorry sweetie. As you know, you are the experiment. I love you!" See...parents learn with time which battles to fight and which rules are essential. She doesn't seem to be permanently scarred from our mistakes. Maybe just a few temporary wounds :)this one and this one, so this had to be in a "bake" form as well.
This recipe was so quick to throw together, so make this on a night when you have no time to cook! It is packed with all those great Italian flavors and forms a delicious pan sauce that you can serve over pasta if you would like.
recipe by Carole Jones of mykitchenescapades.com
salt and pepper
2 - 14 ounce cans of diced Italian tomatoes with basil and garlic, drained
1 - 14 ounce can quartered artichoke hearts, drained
4 cloves garlic, minced well (I use a microplane)
3 T fresh parmesan cheese, grated
2 Tb flour or 1 Tb cornstarch (optional, if you would like a thicker pan juice)
4 ounces of shredded mozzarella cheese
fresh basil, chopped
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Lightly spray a 9x13 glass pan with nonstick spray. Generously salt and pepper both sides of the chicken breasts, then place them in a single layer in the pan.
2. In a medium bowl, gently mix together the drained tomatoes and drained artichoke hearts with the garlic, parmesan cheese and flour/cornstarch if using. Spread this mixture over the top of the chicken and bake, uncovered for 45 minutes. Sprinkle on the mozzarella cheese and place under the broiler until browned, about 3 minutes. Remove from the oven and sprinkle the fresh basil over the top. You can serve this alone or with some pasta because it does make some pan juices.