Chicken Pot Pie

Chicken Pot PieWe are seeing signs of Fall in the mid-west. A season both my wife and I really enjoy. It is a season where the cool is among us, the smell is different in the air, and it is a time where we begin to cook different foods. You know the type, the hearty ones. The ones that you can smell outside of your house when you are pulling into the driveway. One of my wife’s favorite recipes for this time of year is chicken pot pie. This is another one of those recipes that is really simple to make, and is great for leftovers.

Ingredients include:

  • 7 TB of butter
  • 1/2 flour
  • 1/2 cup of heavy whipping cream
  • 1/2 cup of corn kernels
  • 1/2 cup of chopped carrots
  • 1/2 cup of frozen peas
  • 1-2 cups of cooked chicken (to your liking)
  • Salt and Pepper
  • White wine, if you have it
  • Pie Crust, or make your own

Cut your chicken into bite sized pieces. An easy way to do this is to put the chicken in the freezer for nearly thirty minutes, as it will allow it, to you know, freeze. Once cut up, add the chicken to a hot pan with a bit of olive oil, and cook through, nearly 8-10 minutes.

In the meantime, heat a pan and melt your butter. Once melted, add the flour and stir this really well. Add the the cream, and continue to stir. Add salt and pepper to your liking. Add in your meat and vegetables, bring to a boil, then let simmer for nearly 10 minutes. During the simmer process, preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Once the mixture is done, set aside, and let it cool for 10 minutes or so.
Using your pie crusts, add the pot pie mixture, being careful not to overload it. Add your top crust, and fork the edges to make a seal. Cook for 20 minutes. When done, let it sit for 5 minutes or so. Cut in and enjoy.

Do you have something special you put in your pot pie? If so, I would like to know.

Cucumber Salad

Cucumber SaladThe summer garden is gone now. It is somewhat sad to see it go. We had an abundance of cucumbers this year, as my wife simply loves them. The cucumber was on the table throughout the summer in some form or another, typically sliced thick, with a bit of salt. As I am not that big a fan of the cucumber as my wife, I do enjoy it from time to time. A recent meal included barbecue meat on the grill, asian flavored to some degree, and I thought it needed a great, refreshing side. I decided to put together an cucumber salad, as we had many on the counter that day. This recipe is super simple, and yet ultimately fresh and delicious. Ingredients could not be any simpler:

  • 2 cucumbers, peeled and sliced
  • 1 green onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 carrot julienned
  • 1/4 teaspoon of chili flakes
  • 1/3 teaspoon of black pepper
  • 1/2 cup rice wine vinegar

Mix the vinegar, chili flakes, and pepper in a mixing bowl. Toss in the other ingredients and coat. Refrigerate for up to an hour, then plate and serve. As stated, this was a great side and would accompany bbq beef, chicken, or pork really well. Enjoy.

The Lakeshore Salty

Fried Tilapia SandwichIn my last post, I mentioned the Lakeshore salty, a fish dinner I often make for the kids. I recently made the salty (fried fish tilapia filets), and created a delicious sandwich out of it. The sandwich is easy to make. Ingredient breakdown:

  • Flour
  • Cornmeal
  • Salt and Pepper
  • Oil

Fried Tilapia SandwichRinse the tliapia filets with cold water, and pat dry. In a ziplock bag, I mix the 1/2 cup of cornmeal, and about 1/4 cup of flour. Season to your liking with salt and pepper. Heat a deep skillet with cooking oil, and fry the salties until golden brown. I drain them in strainer with paper towel, then season while they are still hot with salt and pepper. The kids typically bypass the idea of making a sandwich, however my wife and I always have the sandwich. This time I whipped up some homemade guacamole, and bought bread that Hispanics typically use for their torta and was it ever delicious! Other ideas that we have used in chopped red onion, garlic, and mayonnaise (a must try).

Fish Fry, Kinda

Ever since I was a young child, I loved fried fish. I remember fishing off my grandma’s pier, and catching a ton of bluegill fish. After catching them, we would walk down, have them cleaned by my dad, and bring the fillets back for breakfast. Keep in mind we would wake up around sunrise, and fish for an hour or so. My grandma would fry them up in a bit of oil, and we would eat with eggs and toast. I still consider that as one of my favorite breakfast items.

I wanted to continue this tradition (of eating fried fish) with my kids. As we fish a lot in our pond, the fish are not worthy of keeping or cleaning as they are too small. Let me state that I do not use the word fish while cooking. I have tagged them as ‘Lakeshore Salties’, and that is how they currently no this type of ‘meat’. I am not going to change that for quiet some time. These Lakeshore salties are tilapia fillets, seasoned, lightly floured with, well, flour and cornmeal. While at the store recently, I saw whole tilapia; cleaned, gutted, and scaled. Yum. I got them, and went a step and fried the whole darn thing. Nothing special, but delicious nonetheless.

Ingredients:

  • Whole tilapia, cleaned, gutted, scaled
  • Salt, lots of it to coat the fish
  • Seasoning
  • Flour
  • Oil

Once the fish is thawed (if you can get it fresh, even better), rinse with cold water and pat dry. Coat the fish, both sides with salt. This will remove any extreme fish smell while eating. Coat for nearly 30 minutes or so. Rinse the fish again and pat dry. Score the sides of the fish with a sharp knife. I seasoned my flour with salt and pepper, lots of it. Then lightly coat the fish with flour. Once the oil is heated through, begin to fry until a light golden brown.

The trick to eating this is to be careful of the bones while pealing away the skin. We enjoyed this with white rice, and tomatoes and soy sauce. Enjoy.