Wednesday, September 25, 2013

purple potpie...the accidental/delicous ode to lavender.

today was a great success. grandma (my mom) was out the door to work by 7:45am. anthony was out the door to work by 8:15am. i was solo with the babes from 8:15am-5:15pm and there were very few meltdowns. we had breakfast. the girls napped while i got nolan ready for the day. the girls woke up in the perfect amount of time to change them and go check out a house for rent. it NEEDS to be ours. sadly we are second in line, so fingers and toes are crossed. it is one cul d'sac away from the house that i grew up in until i was 18 years old, which is a little weird, but also kind of cool. right from the house, we headed to the library for new books, play time and story time. i met two new lady friends complete with phone number exchange (yes!) and may have found a new hair stylist who gives a mighty-fine short hair cut (yes, yes!). during story time, i managed to nurse both girls (individually and without flashing anyone) and get them both to sleep in ergos while nolan enjoyed himself almost the whole time (until it got a little rambunctious and loud and he decided we needed to leave). the clouds had parted and the rain had stopped, so we decided to leave the car and walk home. got home, had lunch, nursed babies, both girls fell asleep, nolan fell asleep, i cooked like a crazy lady...see below. the girls woke up. we read some books, changed some diapers and headed back out, luckily under clear skies, to retrieve the car, returning just in time for grandma to arrive home from work and for us to eat dinner. :)

this is where the purple potpie comes into play. :) when i was at the market on monday, they only had purple and rainbow carrots. i used the purple ones in the potpie filling. by the time i was finished cutting them, my fingertips were a bit grey. by the time the veggies had thoroughly sauteed, the pot had a slatey-purple hew to it. by the time it was finished cooking and served up on our plates, it was pretty bright lavender. if there is a holiday during which you celebrate by eating purple food and dressing in purple clothes, i now know what to cook! advent??

the adventure continues...

i've been gluten free (once again...pregnancy threw a hitch in things) for a little over a week. that doesn't really work with chicken potpie, so i decided that instead of making it in a pie crust, i would make biscuits for the fam and i would eat it by itself or maybe over some rice. to reduce the number of temptations lying around for me to drool over, i halfed the recipe. i have a history of messing this up and today proved no different. i successfully halfed the flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda and butter. i got all that mixed up and cut in and then... i added the full amount of milk (altered with apple cider vinegar to make "buttermilk") that the original recipe called for. doh! if i had my wits about me, i would have got out a second bowl and mixed up the other half of all the dry ingredients and then cut in the other half of the butter and THEN added it to the original soupy mess of a bowl of dough. apparently, my wits were elsewhere. the kitchen was an explosion. ingredients were rough estimates rather than neat, accurate measures and they were all added and mixed up and kneaded together at all the wrong times. i forged ahead, rolled the mess, cut them with a mason jar lid as i couldn't find my mom's cookie cutters and shoved them woefully in the oven with little confidence.

if that wasn't bone-headed enough, midway through this madness, i popped a (relatively large) piece of dough (many may find that gross, but i'm a sucker for dough and batter of pretty much any sort) into my mouth without a second thought. so much for gluten free. dough! (ha...get "doh"...oh dear, i'm a nerd) pretty sure flour doesn't make the cut.

but...when i started this, i told you it was a good day, so i'm pleased to announce that by some miracle, the biscuits were delicious (as i was told by mom, nolan and anthony and as i tasted for myself because as i already messed up the GFness of the day, i figured, why not? go big or stay at home, right?) and despite being bright purple, the potpie filling was super yummy. nolan even cleaned his plate without a fuss, which i doubted a bit when i put that purple goo in front of him. haha.

phew. thank you, pioneer woman for your wise ways...and thank you for not being offended (or maybe you would be, if you ever knew) when i alter your recipes.

pioneer woman's chicken potpie (sans pie) with my alterations:

3 celery stalks
3 medium carrots (perhaps not purple ones) - mine were smallish, so i think i did more like 5
1 large yellow onion
1/2 stick (4 tblsp) butter
1/2 frozen peas - i think i put in more like a cup)
2 cups cooked chicken - probably put in more
1/4 cup all-purpose flour - substituted arrowroot, great for thickening and gluten free
2 cups chicken broth
1 chicken bouillon cube - i omitted this
1/2 cup white wine (optional) - i omitted this
1 cup heavy cream - i used whole milk
1 tsp ground thyme - i think i used way less and added some dry rosemary
1 tsp kosher salt - i used sea salt
black pepper to taste

1. finely dice all veggies. i also added about 4 cloves of garlic, minced.
2. melt butter in large pot (or dutch oven, if you're fancy) and add all veggies, cooking until starting to turn translucent.
3. add chicken and stir to combine.
4. sprinkle with flour (or arrowroot, in my case) and let cook a few minutes, stirring gently.
5. add chicken broth and stir. add bouillon cube and wine, if using.
6. add cream (or whole milk, in my case) and let simmer until it is your desired consistency. she recommends about 4 minutes. i cooked mine a fair amount longer.
7. season with spices (i did this earlier and then added a bit more at this point).

i served it spooned over biscuits cut in half and with a big salad with more carrots and celery. it was awesome.

*to bake with a pie crust top, pour it into a large pie pan, cover the top with your crust and bake at 400 degrees for 30 minutes (or until crust is golden brown) and filling is bubbly. let cool 10 minutes before serving.

when we walked into story time, nolan made himself a name tag. he wrote it all on his own. can you see it? N-O-L-A-N
front row, baby
not liking the noise. ironic really because he LOVES to be loud and sing REALLY loud all the time. hmmmm...
somebody woke up on the way home. haha. lilah trying to bust out.
sweet sissy lilah peeking
smiley girl
the clouds were so pretty. blue sky mixed with dark stormy clouds and big fluffy friendly-looking white ones.
scary potpie midcooking.
at this point, i was a tad hopeful that they had turned out, but wasn't sure as it was time to head back out the door, not time to be tasting yummy baked goods. :)
we got back home in what appeared to be just the knick of time! much less friendly skies.
purple potpie. no filter. haha. and yup, served on christmas dishes. that's how we do.
i was even able to round out the evening with a workout, some computer work, writing this blog and making bug a sign for his first day of school tomorrow (pic to come in later post). i'm one tired momma. good night.

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