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Pot Pie

October 7, 2011

Looking for a perfect fall dinner? Look no further. Skip the little boxes in the freezer aisle and make some homemade pot pie. I use this recipe from tammysrecipes.com and it is our favorite! The original recipe is for chicken pot pie, but you can also make beef or veggie. Don’t worry about being too exact on the filling measurements, as long as you have enough broth to cover your veggies you should be good. We like to use broccoli and cauliflower too in place of the chicken. Also, you can use a regular roll out pie crust recipe for this, but the cream cheese crust is so yummy! Oh, and one last thing, don’t worry about making it look “picture perfect” – being a little rustic looking just adds to the charm!

Pot Pie
Recipe courtesy of tammysrecipes.com

Ingredients: 

1 Tablespoon butter
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 cup diced onion
2/3 cup sliced or diced carrots
1 teaspoon salt (or more, depending on taste)
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 1/2 cups chicken broth (or veggie or beef)
2/3 cup frozen peas
2/3 cup frozen corn
2/3 cups milk
1/2 cup flour
2 cups cubed cooked chicken (or more veggies or beef)

Crust Pastry Ingredients:

1 2/3 cups flour
2 teaspoons celery seed
8 ounces cream cheese, cubed
1/3 cup butter

Instructions: 

1. In saucepan on stove top, combine butter, garlic, onion, carrots, salt, pepper, and chicken broth. Bring to a boil and simmer until carrots are tender.

2. While initial mixture is cooking, combine pastry ingredients, kneading until thoroughly mixed. (I use my hands for this sometimes.) Wrap in plastic wrap and chill.

3. When carrots are tender, add peas and corn and simmer for about 5 more minutes. Whisk together the flour and milk. Add to boiling mixture and return to a boil, stirring constantly; boil for 1-2 minutes or until thickened. Add chicken and stir. At this point I like to taste the filling to see if it has enough salt!

4. Using flour as needed, roll 2/3 of your pastry dough into a 12-inch square. Transfer to an 8-inch square baking dish. Pour filling into crust.

5. Roll remaining dough into a 9-inch square. Cut vents for steam to escape, and place top crust over pie. Trim edges. Wet crust edges using fingertips dipped in water, and then crimp to seal.

6. Bake at 425 degrees for 30-35 minutes or until crust is golden brown and filling is hot and bubbly.

Hot out of the oven and ready to devour! Yum indeed!

The Veg Table: Broccoli Link Up

October 1, 2011

So keeping up with work, life, being pregnant, and trying to blog is more than I thought…so, The Veg Table is moving to a once a month feature. That way I can actually have time to blog about other things too. With that said.. here’s the broccoli recipes that look just delish!

Romain and Broccoli Salad by Tammy’s Recipes
Cauliflower and Broccoli Salad by Tammy’s Recipes
Broccoli and Black Bean Rice by Finding Joy in My Kitchen
How to Use the Broccoli Stem by Kitchen Stewardship
How to Steam Broccoli by Simply Recipes

Broccoli it up!

veg out,

Liz

Veg Table: Roasted Vegggies

September 29, 2011

Roasting is one of my favorite ways to cook veggies. It is a perfect side dish to many types of meals and they are so tasty – and easy!

Roasted Veg

You Need:

  • Broccoli is our veg of the week, so gotta have that
  • Other good veggies: cauliflower, tomatoes, squash, peppers, etc
  • If you use potatoes or carrots be sure to cut them small, because they usually take longer to cook than other veggies do.
  • Olive Oil
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Garlic Powder
  • Basil or Italian Seasoning (You can use a different flavor of spice, but this is my fav!)
What you do:
  • Wash and cut your choice of vegetables into roughly the same size (potatoes and carrots need to be cut smaller).
  • Place on a cooking sheet and drizzle with olive oil to coat.
  • Sprinkle with salt, pepper, and garlic powder. I promise you do not need to measure this – do it by sight and feel. Here’s what it will look like…
  • Then, sprinkle on your basil or other spice(s). Here’s what it looks like again, if you are uncomfortable without measuring, pay special attention to the ratio of spice to veg.
  • Mix it all up and put them in a nice, hot oven. I usually do it anywhere between 400° and 450°. Keep an eye on them, depending on how small you cut them  and what veg you choose they can take anywhere from 15-30 minutes to cook. When they are done, they will be soft and look like this…
That’s it – yummy!

The Veg Table: Broccoli

September 26, 2011

Believe it or not, broccoli is my most favorite vegetable. I know it is one that many are not a fan of, but I think it is quite delicious. I prefer it cooked, as it is one of the best veggies for soaking up the flavors of what you cook it with. I also love how versatile broccoli is, it can be used for many things – raw with dip, being thrown in any ol’ dish, a simple and quick side, I’ve even barbecued it!

Here’s just a few of broccoli’s nutritional high points…

  • High in vitamin C – 1 cup=the recommended daily allowance
  • High in fiber. Lightly steam for the highest benefit – “The fiber-related components in broccoli do a better job of binding together with bile acids in your digestive tract when they’ve been steamed. When this binding process takes place, it’s easier for bile acids to be excreted, and the result is a lowering of your cholesterol levels.” (whfoods.com)
  • High in potassium, magnesium, and calcium. Check out more – here.
Superfoodsrx.com sums it up quite nicely…
“Indeed, broccoli and its cruciferous sidekicks are among the most powerful weapons in our dietary arsenal against cancer. That alone would elevate it to the status of a SuperFood. In addition, broccoli also boosts the immune system, lowers the incidence of cataracts, supports cardiovascular health, builds bones, and fights birth defects. Broccoli is one of the most nutrient-dense foods known; it offers an incredibly high level of nutrition for a very low caloric cost. Of the ten most common vegetables eaten in the United States, broccoli is a clear winner in terms of total polyphenol content; it’s got more polyphenols than all other popular choices; only beets and red onions have more polyphenols per serving.”
Tune in later this week for some yummy broccoli recipes. Here’s a couple I’ve already posted to get you started…
Vegetarian Gyros
Broccoli Cheese Soup
Stir Fry
veg out,
Liz

The Veg Table: Spinach Link-Up

September 24, 2011

 

Here’s some yummy looking links to more nutrient packed spinach recipes. If anyone out there has a favorite spinach recipe of their own, please leave it in the comments. I will add any links to this list.

Garlic Sautéed Spinach from Food Network
Easy Cheesy Spinach  from Food Network
Ricotta Ravioli with Spinach Pesto from Food Network
Secretly Delicious Spinach Pie from Food.com
Spinach Rice Casserole from Tammy’s Recipes
Greek Spinach Orzo Salad from Tammy’s Recipes

veg out,

Liz

The Veg Table: Spinach Salads

September 23, 2011

Cheese and Tomato Spinach Salad with Balsamic Dressing

  • Baby Spinach
  • Chopped or torn Romaine lettuce (optional, adds “crunch”)
  • Sliced tomatoes
  • Fresh mozzarella, cut into quarters or chunks
  • Crumbled Feta cheese
  • Balsamic dressing, recipe below
Combine all ingredients in a salad bowl. Serve with balsamic dressing.
Homemade Balsamic Dressing:
  • 1/4-1/2 cup balsamic vinegar (I like mine more vinegary, but the classic ratio is 1 part vinegar to 3 parts oil)
  • 3/4 cup oil (use canola oil for a milder oil flavor, and olive oil for a stronger flavor)
  • 1 t dried basil
  • 2 t sugar
  • 1/2 t garlic powder
  • 1/4 t salt
  • 1/4 t pepper
Measure all ingredients into a lidded container and shake well to combine. Feel free to adjust the amounts given to taste.

Fruity Spinach Salad with Poppy Seed Dressing

  • Baby spinach
  • Chopped or torn romaine lettuce (optional, adds “crunch”)
  • Dried cranberries
  • Slivered almonds (optional, place in a skillet over medium heat and toast until golden brown)
  • Oranges (can use chopped fresh oranges, or fresh or canned mandarin oranges)
  • Lots of other fruit and berries are delicious with this salad, try out other combos!
  • Poppy seed dressing, recipe below
Toss all ingredients in a salad bowl, leaving the almonds in a small bowl aside if desired. Serve with poppy seed dressing.
Homemade Poppy Seed Dressing

1/4 – 1/2 c. sugar
1 tsp salt
1 tsp dry mustard
1/3 c apple cider vinegar
1 tsp onion powder
1 c canola oil

1 1/2 Tbsp poppy seed

Blend all ingredients expect poppy seeds in blender or with a hand blender. Just whisking the dressing doesn’t give the same creamy texture. Stir in poppy seeds.

The Veg Table: Green Smoothies

September 20, 2011

Green Smoothies

“What are you drinking?!”

Ah yes, I have heard this inquiry far too many times to count.

What is it about a girl drinking a large glass of a brownish-green concoction that makes peoples heads spin? Haha. No worries. Green smoothies are neither scary nor for only the “healthy elite.” If you like regular smoothies, odds are pretty good in your favor you will like green smoothies too.

In their basic form, a green smoothie has more of a formula than a recipe.

Fruit + Greens/Other Veg + Liquid + Something Frozen = Green Smoothie Deliciousness

Let’s break it down…

Fruit

  • You can essentially use any kind you like, however I recommend having a least one banana in there because they add sweetness and cover any “green” flavor, especially if you are using something like Kale. 
  • If some or all of the fruit is frozen, you can skip ice cubes. 
  • This is where the main flavor of the drink comes from. So, if you are like me and don’t mind a jumble of flavors, throw in whatever you have on hand or whatever is on sale. If you like a more uniform taste, try common flavor combos like: strawberry banana, orange/mango/pineapple, a berry variety, etc. 
  • If you are serving a skeptical audience, you can’t go wrong with blueberries as one of the main fruit ingredients. Their dark purple color shows no hint of the hiding spinach greenness.  
Greens/Veg
  • The most mild flavored green to add is probably spinach. Start out with a small amount and work your way up to a higher percentage of veg.
  • If you like spinach, you can branch out to other nutrient saturated greens, such as kale.
  • Other veggies I’ve “snuck” in a smoothie include: carrots, zucchini, and cucumbers.
Liquid
  • I like to use about 50% juice and 50% water for my smoothies. The juice adds flavor and sweetness, but can be overpowering in my opinion if it is the only liquid.
  • For a little bit of creaminess and protein, I often add yogurt or milk.
  • Of course, if you want, you can use 100% water.
  • More liquid will result in a more “juice like” consistency. This is how my husband likes his smoothies.
  • Less liquid and more frozen ingredients will result in a more “milk shake like” consistency. This is how my mom always made smoothies.
Something Frozen
  • Pretty simple, either ice or frozen fruit. The more frozenness in there, the colder it will be!
Need an example? Here’s what I whipped up for breakfast this morning…
2 handfuls baby spinach
1 carrot
1 pear
1 peach
1 1/2 bananas
1/2 cup greek yogurt
1 cup orange juice
1 cup water
1 handful ice cubes
Put it all in the blender and blend until smooth.
I have a Blendtec, which is amazing, but it is not necessary to have a fancy blender. I used to make them all the time with our cheap blender before we had the Blendtec.
Try it! I promise you taste fruity goodness, not spinach!! It is a really easy and tasty way to get more greens in your diet. Because, lets face it, salad just doesn’t always sound good!

 

 

 

 

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