Easy Chicken Pot Pie (w/crust)

My cooking class at my homeschool co-op made the classic comfort food chicken pot pie this week (the kind with the crust on top). There are obviously many ways to prepare this. I tried to keep this simple yet as much "from scratch" cooking as I could in the time we had. Since I have several gluten free families, we did "cheat" and use a prepared gluten free crust but at the end of this recipe, I am including my homemade melt-in-your-mouth buttery crust. To save on some time (& calories), I only use a crust on top of my pot pie and skip putting one on the bottom.

chicken pot pie crust

2 cups of chicken broth (or use water & granulated chicken base)
2 carrots peeled & diced
2 ribs of celery diced
1 small onion diced
2 Tbsp butter
2 cups of veggies (this could be a combo of corn, peas, green beans etc)
4 Tbsp cornstarch
1 cup of heavy whipping cream, half'n'half, etc or use milk & add 2-3 Tbsp cream cheese
1/2tsp garlic salt
1/4 tsp thyme
1 lb cooked boneless skinless chicken shredded or diced
salt & pepper to taste

1 1/3 c flour
1 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
6 Tbsp butter cut into pieces
4-8 Tbsp cold water
If you have a dough mixer with your food processor, add everything except water & pulse to mix until pea size then slowly add water till it achieves a good dough consistency. If you don't have this ability, cut butter into above ingredients (except water). Once blended, then add water. Wrap dough in saran wrap & chill at least 30 min. Roll out to fit the shape of your pan & place on top of chicken pot pit. Remember to vent it (be creative & cut a small design! I did a little heart above lol)

In a sauce pan, saute onion, celery & carrots for a few minutes. Mix broth & cornstarch & pour over veggies. Let them soften & the broth thicken. Add the rest of the veggies, then add the milk/cream mix and the rest of the seasonings. Add the chicken to the mix & once thickened to desired consistency, pour into an 8x8 baking dish. Place crust on top & make sure to vent. Bake at 350 for about 30 minutes or until bubbling on the sides & crust nice & browned. If crust browns too fast, just cover with foil. Also, if filling is close to the top, place baking dish on a cookie sheet in case it boils over.

Chicken Pot Pie w/crust

Ham and Cheese Sliders

These tasty sandwiches are great for a lunch, supper or taking as a meal to a friend! Such an easy recipe but yet it tastes like you spent forever making them! Perfect for parties or having company over as you can prep them ahead of time & just bake when you need them ready to eat!

Ham & Cheese Slider

12 slider rolls
1 1/4lb chipped ham (or turkey ham or any variation you prefer)

sauce recipe:
1 stick of butter
2 Tbsp Dijon mustard
1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 Tbsp poppy seeds
1/3 cup brown sugar

Slice slider rolls in half, spread a bit of mayo on both halves. Using a 9x13 pan, place bottom halves in pan, divide up evenly the ham, top with a little cheese (if using sliced cheese, use about a quarter of a slice or put a little bit of whatever kind of cheese you prefer on it). Place "top" of roll on slider. (*tip, to make clean up easy, I line my pan with foil & spray some pam. Keeps the topping from sticking to my pan)

In a small sauce pan, combine all the sauce ingredients & bring to a light boil. Drizzle the sauce over top of the sliders. Cover with foil & bake at 350 for about 20-25 minutes. I like to take the foil off the last 5 or so  minutes and let a nice crust form on top of rolls from the glaze!

Be Still My Heart...

Let's face it, parenting can be such a hard, down-in-the-trenches job. Some days you wonder if you are really getting through to your child(ren). The work is hard, and not very often do you reap the benefits until years down the road.

But once in a while, I think God gives you just a brief glimpse into what is going on in the heart of your child as a way of reminding & encouraging you to know you are on the right path.

Tonight before we ate dinner, I asked my children who wants to say prayers. Out of the blue, my 2 year old raised her hand and said "I will". I was surprised but said ok.

She bowed her head & clasped her little hands together.

Quietly she said "Thank you Jesus.....for food....then she mumbled a few things I didn't catch....then said Amen". She was SO proud of herself and quite honestly, so was I!!! After all, we've been praying with her for over 2 years and this was the first time she attempted to pray publicly herself.

Fast forward to when I was cleaning up supper. I asked her if she got enough to eat.

She said "yes mom and it was good. Thank you mom for supper"!!!!!

*insert jaw drop*

I got down to her level and said thank you, I think I am gonna cry!

She said "do you need a bissue (tissue) mom"??

AHHHH she is such a sweetheart!!!

She can be such a stubborn little one at times but tonight....tonight was a glimpse of how God is shaping her precious, little heart!!!

Easy Taco Dip Recipe

With today being the Super Bowl, I thought I'd share one of my quick go-to party foods, good for any get together! And the best part, it comes together in just a few minutes with ingredients you most likely have on hand! Perfect for those times you have unexpected company stop by as well and need a quick snack.
Easy Taco Dip Superbowl

All you need is some softened cream cheese, taco meat or black beans and any kind of shredded cheese. Take a microwavable safe plate & spread a layer of cream on it (as seen below). On top of that layer put either cooked taco meat or a can of rinsed black beans on top (or if you feel like it, do a bit of both). On top of that layer sprinkle with whatever kinds of shredded cheese you like. Microwave 1 minute at a time until cheese is melted. Serve with nacho chips. You could also have salsa, sour cream and guacamole available to top with as well! I recently got some chipotle cream cheese marked down and made this dip using that instead of plain cream cheese, it tasted great!

What are some of your favorite game day munchies or party finger foods?