What’s for Dinner?

It’s that time of year when my cooking becomes more cozy. Soups, casseroles and chicken pot pie have begun to take over my life, and I’m totally okay with that.

Sunday – Chicken Pot Pie.
The idea to make this came from my husband, Dustin. It had occurred to me before to make this awhile back, but I thought it would be too challenging so I never tried…until now! Let me tell you, it was EASY. First off, buy yourself a darn store bought rotisserie chicken and a darn store bought pie crust and bask in all that extra time you have (or finish doing your laundry). I got this recipe from none other, than the Pioneer Woman. Folks, her recipes are a godsend and perfect for those who don’t cook because she takes pictures of each step along the way. I changed two things; I added half a cup of frozen peas and I made it with a bottom crust. Hers just called for a top pie crust, but in our household, we’d have none of that. It didn’t turn soggy either! The filling made enough to fill two nine inch pie crusts. We made one, and froze the other one. By the time we cooked everything and baked it, it took close to an hour.

http://thepioneerwoman.com/cooking/2013/08/pot-pie/

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Monday – My father’s birthday and we had delicious pizza from Slices ‘n Ices. Try it. You won’t regret it.
Tuesday – Cauliflower soup.
When I first told Dustin I was making this, he shook his head back and forth and said “No”, similar to a teenager. I promised him it would be yummy. If you want to make a lighter, calorie friendly version of potato soup, well, this isn’t the recipe for you. This soup lost all its nutritional benefits when I began measuring the grated cheese by the handful. One reason I like this versus potato soup is it takes less time. The cauliflower doesn’t cook for as long as potatoes and you don’t have to peel any potatoes…the bane of my existence. In total, it probably took 40 minutes.

http://thepioneerwoman.com/cooking/2014/10/cheesy-cauliflower-soup/

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Wednesday – Chicken Pot Pie…again!
So when I made the chicken pot pie on Sunday, I had enough filling for a second pie. I put it in the freezer, uncooked, anticipating that I’d bake it the following week. This pot pie was so darn delicious that we couldn’t wait! The next day I placed it in the fridge to defrost. Dustin and I both agreed that this one taste even better! One downside is that it took about 40 minutes to bake. I think the crust got slightly soggy when defrosting, but when it was done baking, there was no sogginess!

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Thursday – Loaded Baked Potato and Chicken Casserole
This is one of those pinterest recipes you see, and think, “I could really make that!”. This recipe was simple, yet good. It contains bacon, potato and cheese. How could it taste bad? I did read some of the comments on this recipe before making it, and based on the reviews stating it was too liquidy, I reduced the heavy cream to a few tablespoons drizzled over the top. I also did not add any butter. If you wanted butter, I’d recommend adding it to your serving only, just as you’d put on top of a baked potato. I’m glad I took a before and after picture of this recipe. It looks so pretty and colorful before, and definitely not as pretty or colorful afterwards. Looks aren’t everything!

http://www.deliciousasitlooks.com/2013/05/loaded-baked-potato-chicken-casserole.html

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Friday – Beef and Bean Burritos.
I know right. Beef and Bean burritos…so groundbreaking! But hear me out…this involves enchilada sauce, or Mexican tomato sauce if you can find it. I work late on Fridays and, solely because it was Friday, I was refusing to cook anything real, and this took maybe 15 minutes. To season the beef, I used my homemade taco seasoning before adding the sauce to it. And you guessed it…another recipe from the Pioneer Woman!

http://thepioneerwoman.com/cooking/2010/07/brown-hot-and-plenty-of-it-vol-i/

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Saturday – Pumpkin Pie Cheesecake
Okay, so this isn’t dinner. And I actually made it Friday night…but I ate it Saturday. It was life changing. Earth Shattering. Mind blowing. I never thought I could make a cheesecake, given that they have the reputation of being finicky and my amount of patience runs neck and neck with a toddler’s. I made this recipe, and changed two things. I didn’t have allspice, so I omitted it (and it was so good without it, so I’ll probably never add it) and I lowered the oven temperature to 325 F, let it bake for 45 minutes, turned off the oven and let the cheesecake cool down gradually inside. I read somewhere that if you cook it at too high of a temperature or for too long, it will crack like San Andreas fault. If that happens…just tell your guests it’s earthquake cheesecake. They’ll believe it was on purpose 😉

http://www.food.com/recipe/the-cheesecake-factory-pumpkin-cheesecake-by-todd-wilbur-46780

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