By People Staff
April 12, 2010 12:00 PM

FOOD

Matt Lauer

MY FAVORITE CHICKEN DISH

After years of cooking segments on Today, the host picks the meal that made the biggest impression

CHICKEN MARBELLA

• 1 whole chicken, 5 lbs., cut into 8-10 pieces

• ½ head of garlic, peeled and finely pureed

• 2 tbsp. dried oregano, coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper

• ¼ cup red-wine vinegar

• ¼ cup olive oil

• ½ cup pitted prunes

• ¼ cup pitted Spanish green olives

• ¼ cup capers with a bit of juice

• 3 bay leaves

• ½ cup white wine

• ½ cup brown sugar

• 2 tbsp. Italian parsley or fresh coriander, finely chopped

1. Combine chicken, garlic, oregano, salt, pepper, vinegar, olive oil, prunes, olives, capers and bay leaves in a large bowl. Cover bowl and marinate in refrigerator overnight.

2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

3. Place chicken in large, shallow baking pan, and spoon marinade over it evenly.

4. Pour white wine over the chicken, and sprinkle with brown sugar.

5. Bake for 50-60 min., basting frequently with pan juices.

6. Transfer chicken, prunes, olives and capers to serving platter with a slotted spoon. Moisten with pan juices, and sprinkle with parsley.

For more recipes from the Today show, go to cookingschool.todayshow.com

TRAVEL

Michelle Obama’s …

NEW YORK TOUR

On a jam-packed visit, the First Lady (plus her mom and daughters) hit six hot spots

EMPIRE STATE BUILDING

No special treatment here: Trying to blend in with fellow sightseers, the family explored the landmark while public tours were going on. Info: esbnyc.com

MAGNOLIA BAKERY

Stopping in for a treat, Sasha and Malia (along with some friends) decorated cupcakes with the bakery’s owners, while Michelle and her mother nibbled on red velvet cake. They later left with a bagful of confections.

Info: magnoliabakery.com

GRIMALDI’S PIZZERIA

The celeb-friendly Brooklyn pizzeria remained open while the ladies of the White House lunched on pepperoni, sausage and cheese pizzas. “They were very friendly and having fun,” said the manager.

Info: grimaldis.com

OTHER STOPS

DYLAN’S CANDY BAR

The Obamas visited this uptown sweets emporium.

Info: dylanscandybar.com

BLUE MAN GROUP

Two days after seeing this N.Y.C. staple, they took in the ADDAMS FAMILY musical.

Info: broadway.com

HOME

Countess LuAnn de Lesseps …

INSIDE MY HOME!

A first look at the Real Housewives of N.Y.C. star’s bachelorette pad

1 TALL ORDER

“Big pieces create instant opulence,” says her decorator Bill Stubbs.

Windows Vase, $49.95; cb2.com

2 GOING WILD

“I’m adventurous,” she says of her rug choice. “That’s why I’m on a reality show!”

Hometrends Zebra Accent Rug, $44; walmart.com

GET THE LOOK!

3 HAVE A BALL

Glass orbs “add a little sparkle,” says Stubbs.

Bubble Sphere, $39.95; crateandbarrel.com

4 TAKE A TUMBLE

“I love this barware,” says de Lesseps. “I’ve got to find Scotch to go in it!”

Thomas O’Brien “Darby” glasses, $70 for 4; amazon.com

5 LOOKING GOOD

“This feels fresh, but also art deco and Old Hollywood at the same time,” says de Lesseps.

Simone Mirror, $149; zgallerie.com

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