i've only had chicken pot pie once that i can recall and it wasn't anything special. the filling was ok, somewhat flavorless, and the crust was a chewy, gummy, soggy mess. so when i spied this slow cooker version of chicken pot pie that purposely doesn't have a crust, i was sold.
jason and i spent a week in florida back in february. back when the winter is normally super cold and super snowy and we're dying for a break. back when you could have mistaken me as simply putting on a few pounds instead of obviously pregnant. on the second day we were there, we went to a small orange farm and picked oranges. every day for the next week, we ate oranges for breakfast and before we went to bed. we had so many left, i took a half dozen home in my carry on. they were still delicious, sweet, and juicy enough for the juice to run down my arms and drip off my elbows when i ate them once i was home in new york.
i've professed my love of lasagna a few times already, i just wish it didn't take all afternoon to put together. enter deconstructed lasagna, a short cut version i made last october that has all the same flavors of layered lasagna without the fuss of layering noodles, sauce, and cheese. i didn't think it could get any easier, until i stumbled upon this slow cooker version a few weeks later and mentally tucked it away. until a couple weeks ago, when it was cold and dreary and winter looked like he still wanted to rear his ugly head. there's nothing better than coming home to a slow cooked dinner on those days.
Labels: slow cooker
i can't believe the last time i made cookies was almost a four full months ago...for christmas! all the salty and coconutty treats lately means i've been passing on cookies, one of my all time favorites. especially since they're easy to make and i've never met one i didn't like.
which brings me to these cookies. two of my all time favorite things - peanut butter and vanilla - wrapped into one simple, super chewy, delicious cookie. i was skeptical at first - do vanilla and peanut butter really work together? it seems like an odd combination - but as soon as i had the first whiff from the oven, i knew they would be keepers. too bad i didn't make a double batch: half for now, half for later.
i have a confession: these are the first and only nanaimo bars i've ever eaten.
i don't visit bakeries all that often (which is especially good for my pants, since it's pretty hard for me to resist a cookie, cupcake, scone, or good old fashioned slice of cake) and i haven't been in a coffee shop since late september. the only place i've ever seen nanaimo bars pop up for sale is the bakery case at the little theatre downtown. for the last few months, they've taunted me. and while i'm usually a sweets girl, this whole baby thing has me all kinds of turned around - wanting as much salty popcorn as i can get my hands on and everything doused in coconut.
calling all citrus lovers: this is the chicken of your dreams. not only does it take minutes to prepare and finish, but the citrus flavor is killer.
chicken breasts are marinated in orange and lemon juice, garlic, say and honey and baked to perfection. and as if citrus infused chicken just isn't citrusey enough for you, the marinade is simmered down to a thick pan sauce to serve over the chicken. i suggest serving it with plain rice, mashed potatoes, roasted potatoes, or our choice, rice pilaf, to soak up the sauce. it's intense, in all the right ways.
as i've said before, it's been my goal this winter and spring to get a lot more use out of my slow cooker. and this chicken santa fe is one of my new favorites. i've been craving mexican food like crazy the past couple months and this is an easy way to curb the cravings. usually when we have tacos, they're ground beef, simply because it seems to be a bit easier and quicker to cook than chicken - all the cutting or poaching and shredding before spicing it up is more than i want to deal with some nights. but this chicken comes out perfectly spiced and falling completely apart from the slow cook. sure, you can shred it with forks, or use a set of tongs to break it up with one hand. it falls apart that easy.
last summer, i canned a heck of a lot of fruit. strawberry jam. cherry almond jam. peach butter. apple pie filling. and along with the grape jelly and raspberry jam from my grandpa and mom, my basement is still stocked to the brim with fruit. so lately i've been on the lookout for ways to use jam - besides the obvious thumbprint cookie, between two pieces of bread, or smeared on a ritz with peanut butter. which brings me to this month's secret recipe club and tessa of the cookin' chemist's blueberry swirl cheesecake. as soon as i saw it, i knew cheesecake would be the perfect vessel for some of my homemade jam. and it didn't disappoint in the least.
i haven't had any true cravings for anything since i've been pregnant - at least not cravings like other women i know, forcing their husbands to drive to the store for double stuff oreos, oranges, and ice cream. but i've had hankerings for foods and each one lasts about a week or two, until i move on to the next food. first it was fried haddock sandwiches. then lay's sour cream & onion potato chips, a few weeks of popcorn, and lately, it's coconut. for one week, all i wanted was a coconut donut. you know, one of those glazed cake donuts doused in sweetened, shredded coconut. miraculously i was able to walk right past them in the bakery of my grocery store. but as soon as i got home from the store, these homemade mini versions were mine. so i ate them all. in three days.
i'm constantly on the lookout for a breakfast that tastes great, takes five minutes or less to make, and will keep me full until lunchtime. luckily, this sandwich not only meets those requirements, but is also a great use of leftovers! you really don't need a recipe for this one: grill or toast a bun, heat up a leftover prosciutto wrapped pork cutlet, fry or poach an egg, and layer the pork, egg, and cheese on the bun.