Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Youngest Hawthorne Is Home And Requests Chicken Pot Pie.

Youngest Hawthorne and Junior breezed in on Friday afternoon. My little Hawthornelet immediately dug into the pork ribs, then started on the barbecue chicken thighs. The next afternoon, I asked him what he'd like for dinner. Chicken pot pies. Not a problem. And another YAY! I get to clean yet another package out of my deep freeze.
I thawed out a package of three chicken breasts. Put them in a skillet, added water, salt, and bay leaves. Heated up to a simmer, covered and barely simmered 20 minutes each side. During the cooking time, I was preparing the veggies for the pot pies: onions, carrots, celery, among other stuff. I added in the onion skins, the carrot peels, and the celery leaves to the chickens while they cooked. Just for extra flavor.
Here are my chickies 40 minutes later. Remove the bosoms and save the cooking broth.
Remove the meat from the bone and chop.
The rest of the ingredients for my pot pies: celery, finely diced carrot, finely diced onion, finely chopped water chestnuts, finely diced corn
I heated some BELOO and LOLUB. That's Bertolli Extra Light Olive Oil and Land O' Lakes Unsalted Butter. And added in the carrots, celery, onions, and water chestnuts. Cooked for about 2 minutes. I got stoopid acronyms. Gimme my own Food Network show!
Added in the corn and heated through.
About 3 tablespoons of flour went in here and I cooked for a minute or so, stirring, to cook the flour and get rid of the raw taste.
I gradually strained my cooking broth into the veggie mix, stirring and thickening.
Then I added in about 1/2 cup heavy cream for richness and the pretty.
Chicken went in next.
A block of frozen peas went in next. Do not use canned peas. Canned peas are the EVUL. You use can peas? I will hunt you down and hurt you.
Heat through.
Fresh ground pepper went in, a few twists of salt, and a bit of grated nutmeg. The nutmeg gives it that certain je ne sais quoi. Or as RayRay says, "The thing that makes you go, 'Mmmmmm. What is that?' " Except NOT. I freaking know nutmeg when I taste it. And I think everybody else does too, but the Rache likes to say that every damn time she puts nutmeg into something. Speaking of Food Network, Sandra Lee actually piped that mantra when she was putting jalapenos into something she was assembling. (Sandra is an assembler, not a cook.) "The jalapeno will make your guests go, "Hmmmm. What is that flavor." Right, Sandy. I don't think so. I know jalapeno when I bite into it. And so does everybody else. Trust me on this.
While I was making the chicken pot pie filling, Mr. Hawthorne was making the biscuit topping. I buy a biscuit mix from TJ's, a local convenience store up the street. They buy their biscuit mix from Jennette Brothers in Elizabeth City. And it makes damn good biscuits. If you don't make your own biscuit dough, you could use Bisquick.
Mr. Hawthorne sloppily made the biscuit topping.
Mr. Hawthorne. Man, you've done better. What happened tonight? As for the pot pies, the three chicken bosoms and the veggies made enough for 4 little tins. I baked two last night and froze the other two. So yeah. Two steps forward and one step back. Got 3 split breasts out of the deep freeze and put 2 pot pies back in. Small steps. Small steps.
I popped these into the oven and baked until the topping was lightly browned. Then I added some grated cheese and baked until the cheese was melted ...
... and the biscuit topping was almost burned in places. Timing is everything.
Youngest Hawthorne likee.
While my little Hawthorne was eating his dinner, Mr. Hawthorne was trying to make conversation. With a nineteen-year-old. While he was eating. Mr. Hawthorne is excited about the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday. So he tried to engage Youngest Hawthorne in a conversation about the wonderfulness of holidays. "So, Son, what's your favorite holiday?" Without missing a beat, or a chew, Youngest Hawthorne responded, "President's Day. With Martin Luther King Day a close second." Gotta love that kid.
Youngest Hawthorne likee pot pie alot. I must admit, my pot pies were quite good, in a peasanty sort of way. And as you may or may not know, I come from very hearty peasant stock.

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