Thursday, April 28, 2011

Dinner can be dangerous

My friend Wendi Meredith and I have discussed, at length, my inability to survive in the kitchen.
I have a semi-working stove with only two burners, a new microwave, a toaster oven and my favorite appliance, a 50-quart crock-pot. 
Fifty quarts might seem over the top.  However, for the off chance that I must feed more than 3 people, without a hospital visit, bigger is better.

Over the past three weeks, none of my dinners were totally eatable.
Sometimes the meat or pasta was salvageable.  
Other times, take out was the only option.  
Thankfully, I have a pizza place and a Chinese restaurant on speed dial and bookmarked on my computer.

Two nights ago, I decided to make chicken potpie, using the month old crock pot chicken. 
Wendi thought she could give me some pointers.
My fire extinguisher was fully charged and sitting on the counter.

From Wendi:  This is verrrrrrrrry easy & guaranteed to make Scott smile..............
C H I C K E N  P O T  P I E
·  2 cups cooked, cubed chicken (leftovers from a previous “fire” meal...or canned chicken is always an option)
·  2 (10 oz.) cans cream of chicken soup
·  1 (14 oz.) can chicken broth
·  1 (16 oz.) bag frozen mixed vegetables [or 2-15 oz. cans, drained]
·  1 cup self-rising flour
·  1 cup milk
·  1 stick margarine, melted
1)   Mix chicken, soup, broth & vegetables together in a 9x13 baking dish
2)   Mix flour, milk & margarine together for a crust & pour over above mixture. [Double these ingredients if a thicker crust is desired]
3)   Bake uncovered for 1 hour @ 400 degrees
4)   E.A.T. & E.N.J.O.Y.

Helen: Thanks for the recipe.  I'll have to try it.  
Later that evening I emailed Wendi.

Helen: Here's what I did for dinner.

 1 can cream of herb chicken soup undiluted
 1 can mixed vegetables with liquid
 * added some left over peas and corn from the frig.
 *cut up about 1 chicken breast, also from frig
 * mix everything and put in two cruets.
 * rolled out store bought pastry dough from frig and cut circles to fit over the cruets.
Bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes.... voila, dinner for two.
Scott actually ate it all.  
I thought I did a fabulous job.    I'm including a photo.

If this hadn’t turned out, I might say…

What do you call chicken potpie, without the chicken?

Wendi:   You did a fantastic job! I am seeing another personality avenue that you must pursue............

Helen:   Actually, it was mathematically probable.  I figure I can do something simple one time out of a 1000... 

Did you see the freehanded hearts?  
I don't know why I did that except there was dough left over from where the crust should have been bigger, and I thought Scott would appreciate my efforts more if they came out black.   He survived.  

Tonight it beef stew.  The carrots look limp and I have green stuff in the veggie drawer that should be thrown out, so stew sounds perfect.
Scott says that I like to exceed the lifespan of what's in the frig.   I say the frig needs cleaning out.

Good old crock pot to my rescue...

Check out Wendi Meredith’s book, The Art of Frugality. And she’s also on Facebook.
Someday, Wendi and I will be do a tag team presentation.  She will instruct on how to save money and I’ll speak on how to spend it.  
Wendi can also be seen cooking on TV in Virginia.  Helen will not. 

Have a great day.  Email me at

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