Monday, June 3, 2013

Buttermilk Biscuit Pot Pie

 I got this recipe out of a cookbook called 'Just For Kids' that I've had for awhile. It has some cute/fun recipe ideas, and this one looked great because:
1) I love chicken pot pie.
2) It was actually originally a recipe for mini pot pies, and little things are cute.

So I started gathering all of my ingredients, then realized we really don't have little ramekins, so our pot pie lost the cuteness factor. However, it was no less delicious! Here's the recipe:

1 container (about 16 oz.) refrigerated buttermilk biscuits
1 1/2 cups milk 1 package white sauce mix (I don't know where you can find white sauce mix in the grocery store, so with some help from Jenn, I made my own by patiently mixing milk, butter and flour on the stove. I think it was 2 cups milk, 2 Tbsp butter and 2 Tbsp flour, but you can look up white sauce recipes online for confirmation on what will work!)
2 cups cut-up chicken (we cut ours into cubes and baked them for about 15 mins on 350 first, just to be safe)
1 cup frozen assorted veggies, partially thawed (ours had carrot, peas, green beans and corn)
 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
2 cups french fried onions/onion straws (we skipped this part, as it's just a suggestion for a topping) 

What to Do:
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees, separate the biscuits and press into (8 8-ounce ramekins) large oven-safe dish (we used a corningware oval dish), pressing up sides to form a crust.
- Whisk milk, flour and fat (butter or oil) in a pan over low to medium heat until it thickens. This could take a little while (I think it took me 10 minutes or so). If you have the white sauce mix, disregard the previous sentence and whisk it and the milk to a boil over medium heat. Reduce heat to low; simmer 1 minute, whisking constantly, until thickened.
- Stir in chicken and veggies.
- Spoon (about 1/3 cup of the chicken mixture into each cup) mixture into dish with the biscuits. Bake 15-20 minutes, or until golden brown. Top each with cheese (and onion). Bake 3 more minutes or until golden again.

Should make about 8 servings.

 Our only suggestion is to spread out the biscuits really well. We felt that there was WAY too much biscuit in each bite of pot pie, so maybe we would have used 4 on the bottom and 4 on top (although I don't know how it would've worked)? Or just 4 on the bottom. Anyway, it was yummy, fairly easy to make, and gave us leftovers for a couple days. We'd definitely make it again one day.

Friday, June 29, 2012

cilantro spinach chickpea salad {by laurie}

hi everyone!  i'm laurie, one of jenn's friends from way back in the day.  (believe it or not, jenn and i have known each other since fifth grade!)  for as long as i can remember, jenn and i have loved to eat . . . really, who doesn't?  so, i was so excited when she told me she was starting a collaborative food blog.  i am trilled to join the team and to be able to share some recipes here!

i absolutely love cooking and baking.  for as long as i can remember back, i have been helping my mom in the kitchen.  my mom is absolutely amazing when it comes to food, and i definitely get my love of being in the kitchen from her.  now that i'm married, i love being able to cook and bake with my husband too.  we have so much fun creating recipes together for our family and friends.

i share tons of recipes as well as snapshots of my daily life over on my blog love, laurie so be sure to stop by and say hi sometime.

so . . . let's get down to business.  the real reason that i'm here is to tell you about this salad.  since it has been so hot the past few days, i haven't been in the mood for heavy meals.  so the other day for dinner i made this chickpea salad with cilantro and spinach.  it was so light and refreshing (and healthy too)!  ryan has already requested that i make it again soon.  i have a feeling that this salad is going to be a staple in our house over the summer!

cilantro spinach chickpea salad
prep time: 10 minutes
yields: 4 servings

2 15-ounce cans of chickpeas
4 cups of fresh spinach
1/2 cup fresh cilantro
1 small sweet onion, chopped
1 lime, juiced
1 teaspoon granulated sugar
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
dash of salt
dash of pepper

drain and rinse the chickpeas.  place the chickpeas in a bowl and set aside.  in a food processor, add the spinach and pulse until finely chopped.  add the chopped spinach to the bowl with the chickpeas.
in the food processor, add the cilantro, onion, lime juice, sugar, olive oil, garlic powder, and onion powder.  pulse until smooth.  pour the cilantro dressing over the spinach and chickpeas.  stir well.  season with salt and pepper to taste.

*you can see my original post of this recipe here on my blog.


Monday, June 11, 2012

Zucchini Bread Pancakes

Ingredients1. c all purpose flour
3/4 c. whole wheat flour
1 tsp salt
4 tsp baking powder
3 Tbsp sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg (we didn't have so I used a sprinkle of ginger)
1 1/2 c. milk
2 eggs
2 c. zucchini, shredded
1 tsp vanilla
3 Tbsp butter, melted

1. In a large mixing bowl, combine dry ingredients: flour, salt, baking powder, sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg. In another bowl, whisk together milk, eggs, zucchini, vanilla, and melted butter. Pour wet ingredients into dry ingredients and stir until well-combined.
2. Coat a griddle with butter or spray with cooking spray and set to medium-high heat. Drop 1/4 c. of batter onto the griddle; cook 1-2 minutes on each side, until brown and cooked through.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

(mostly) Vegan Easter!

My sister Lisa is vegan and so I challenged myself for Easter to make a mostly vegan meal for our families to enjoy. There was no super elaborate recipes, just simple good healthy food made vegan with a few modifications. The best thing about this meal is that I don't think anyone would have realized it was vegan if I didn't mention it and it was enjoyed by everyone.

We made a vegi and cracker platter with two different dips. The chopped vegis included broccoli, orange bell pepper, grape tomatoes, and celery. The crackers were garden triscuts and buffalo wheat thins (both naturally vegan). The dips were a roasted red pepper hummus (store bought) and a homemade dip which was a sweet pepper and onion relish mixed with vegan cream cheese to create a creamy sweet peppery dip. It was a huge hit!

Spiral Ham (the only non-vegan menu item, prepared according to the package)
Roasted Potatoes and Onions (chopped potatoes, chopped onions, garlic, salt, pepper, evoo, baked in a casserole dish at 375 degrees for about an hour)
Maple Carrots (peeled, sliced, simmered on stove with a little water, evoo, salt, and maple syrup until carrots are cooked and liquid is reduced)
Dijon Balsamic Asparagus (sauteed asparagus tossed with balsamic vinegar, evoo, dijon mustard, salt and pepper)
Portabello Mushroom Linguine (sauteed mushrooms and onions tossed with tri color linguine and a garlic white wine sauce)

Desserts were not provided by me but included a cherry cobbler (vegan) and pineapple orange sorbet (also vegan) and chocolate cake/ice cream (not vegan).

Monday, April 2, 2012

Peanut Butter Brownies from Scratch!

My most recent pride & joy, the peanut butter brownies started the whole kitchen play day on Saturday morning! I knew I wanted to make something to send to work with Kyle to share with the guys (they love that and I enjoy making yummy stuff for them). I asked if Ky wanted chocolate chip cookies or brownies and he requested brownies. We have lots of ingredients, but didn't have a mix, so I looked online and found out I could make brownies from scratch. At this point, let me interject and say that I've never desired a brownie recipe from scratch because we've found a winner and it can't be beaten. Ghirardelli makes the BEST double chocolate brownie mix, hands down. However, since we didn't have it and I was up for a challenge, I decided to make these myself, and change them up a bit to become peanut butter-y :)

I found a good recipe here and set to work. I preheated the oven to 350, and greased a rectangular bread pan (we don't have a square pan and I didn't want to double to 9x13 this time). Then I gathered these ingredients:

- 1/2 cup butter 1/2 cup applesauce! (saw the recommendation in the notes on and decided to cut out the butter). LOVE this change.
- 1 cup white sugar (stuck with this, might try blue agave syrup in exchange for some sugar next time, but I need to find out the conversion).
- 2 eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour (I used whole wheat flour)
- 1/4 tsp. salt (kosher)
- 1/4 tsp. baking powder
**Note: I also added about 1/3 cup of chocolate chips and 1/4 cup of peanut butter. This is key.
**One of our roommates said that if you want gooey brownies, you should add olive oil, so I put in a little bit of that, too!

I followed these instructions:
1. In a large saucepan, melt butter warm applesauce. Remove from heat, and stir in sugar, eggs (beaten beforehand) and 1 tsp vanilla. Mix in cocoa, flour, salt and baking powder, (then chocolate chips and olive oil). Be careful not to over-mix! Spread batter into pan.
2. Bake for 25-30 minutes. Mine was extra moist, so I gave it about an extra 8 minutes in the oven, until a skewer stick came out a little chocolaty, but not too wet.
3. Cool.

THEN came the frosting...
3 tablespoons butter, softened (I did use the butter here, since it was a lot less)
3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tablespoon honey
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup confectioners' sugar
**I added in a little cinnamon and about a 1/4 cup of peanut butter!

To Make Frosting: Combine 3 tablespoons butter, 3 tablespoons cocoa, 1 tablespoon honey, 1 teaspoon vanilla, and 1 cup confectioners' sugar. Add sprinkle of cinnamon and stir in peanut butter. Frost brownies while they are still warm.


To say that these brownies were delicious is an understatement. They were super moist, peanut buttery and even tasted a little different texture-wise with the applesauce. I wanted to make sure they were done, but might cook for a few minutes less if I were to make these again because in the end, they were a little bit cakey on the outside. Still so good and the icing was awesome. Kyle brought these to work after I enjoyed 1 and everybody loved them. We shared a couple with roommates, too, and they left a little thank you note with a big 'YUM!' on it. Hurray :) They were a hit! Fun to make something new, change it up and have it work :) I love it! So glad we have this blog to document it all, too!!!