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The Story of the Move and New Roast Chicken Recipe

The move was hard: I ended up sick, and now Santa Maria has fallen ill, too. She was just diagnosed with strep throat. Here’s how it happened. We just weren’t prepared, and we got exhausted. I underestimated the amount of packing that needed to be done, and on the night before the movers were due I was close to panicking.

At 2:00 a.m. that morning, Santa Maria and I gave up. Or rather, our bodies gave up. We tried to go to sleep, but thoughts of what needed to be done pulled both of us out of bed at 5:30. In the pre-dawn hours I raced to collect shoes, rollerblades, children’s toys, books, towels, sweaters, and almost everything we owned. I still can't believe I finished it.

Friends had told us that moving is stressful (one even went so far as to claim it's more stressful for a couple than divorce, but I couldn't follow that logic—wouldn't a divorce include a move?). I told the foreman on the move that I was freaking out, and he said "You have nothing to worry about, we'll take care of everything." And he was right. The company we hired, The Super Movers, lived up to its name.

The foreman put me at ease with stories from his job. My favorite was about a time he was working for a different company, and he was packing up an apartment in Manhattan. He found $10,000 in cash in a closet, the bills still bundled by the bank. He handed the stash to the wife, who passed it on to her husband. At the end of the day, the husband thanked him for returning it, saying he had forgotten all about it.

After all our boxes and furniture were delivered to the new apartment, we spent the weekend at my mother's house: the new apartment was full of paint and varnish fumes, and we needed a break. My mother was out of town, so we brought provisions with us, including a chicken. I roasted it on Saturday and created a new recipe with what I could find in the house.

I sliced an apple and stuffed the pieces into the cavity, along with some garlic, a bit of rosemary, and a shake of ground ginger or two. The chicken was as tasty as ever, and there was an unexpected bonus: the apples. The slices were a delicious treat, though, apparently, not enough to keep the doctor away.

High-Stress Apple Roast Chicken


  • 1 three-to-four pound chicken, preferably organic
  • one apple, cut into thick slices
  • a shake of ground ginger
  • a pinch of rosemary
  • 3-4 garlic cloves, in their casing
  • salt and pepper to taste

Turn oven on to 450 degrees.
Remove any of the chicken's innards that might be packaged with the bird. Rinse and place it in a roasting pan on a rack, breast side up.
Stuff the apple, garlic, rosemary, and ginger into the cavity.
Salt and pepper the cavity and skin.

When the oven is hot, pour about about a cup of water in the roasting pan and place in the oven.
From time to time, check to make sure the water hasn't evaporated.
Roast for about an hour, until the temperature in the thigh is at least 165 degrees.

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