What’s Cookin’ in the Parsonage?

Special memories, that’s what!

Sunday dinner is just such a special family time. Growing up in a home that made Sunday dinner a special occasion, gave me the desire to have a special meal with a pretty table most every Sunday. Sunday is a special day, and we enjoyed making dinner something out of the ordinary. So while my girls were growing up, I tried to make a good meal, use the pretty dishes and enjoy our family time around the table.

This weekend were “Puffs moments” over and over. You know what I mean? Tears are there at the slightest prompting. Whitney is planning to be married in 12 days. She was home this weekend to attend the bridal shower our church gave her. It was beautiful. The food was fantastic. The friends were so kind. And of course the gifts she received were also huge blessings. Okay, so right there, my emotions were running high. My dear church family was there to shower her with their love, the Word of God in a challenge that was given, and also with their gifts – what a blessing! My family had also planned to be there at the shower, but the Lord providentially hindered them. That was a disappointment, but when the snowy weather came on Saturday, I was thankful they didn’t get caught in the winter weather! God always goes ahead of us!

But then I also realized that this is probably the last time Whitney will be home as a single gal. That’s a good thing, and I’m truly ready for her to be married, but there’s just so much emotion that goes along with a wedding! Reflections of the past, questions of your preparing your daughter for what lies ahead, and wondering what the Lord will bring into her path are all a part of this time in my life.

Because of all of this, I wanted dinner to be special, so I tried a couple new recipes. They turned out well, and everyone seemed to enjoy them. Both were also good make-ahead dishes – always a plus on a busy Sunday! Here’s the family with Alli behind the camera…


This next picture is so much more the “real” us! I set my camera on my butcher block and set the auto timer on so we could all be in the picture. As we sat and waited for the picture to be taken, my camera was making little “boing” noises to let us know it was about to snap our picture. The noise was so comical sounding and we were have a difficult time keeping our composure. Whitney lost it just as the camera snapped and this is the result…

Then we all lost it! I can’t tell you how often at our dinner table we have erupted into laughter. I remember milk being “spilled” – not from the glass, but from the one who took a sip at the wrong moment! That happened more than once, I promise you.

Yes, special memories are made at the dinner table. That’s what family life is all about, isn’t it? The home is a gift from the Lord. It’s a respite. It’s our responsibility as a wise woman to build our house. Part of that building is the work and planning ahead it takes to get a meal on the table – even on busy Sundays. It’s so worth it – even when pictures can’t be taken, thanks has to be given at the end of the meal rather than before, because no one can pray without laughing, and milk gets “spilled!”

My menu for yesterday was:
Chicken Fricassee *
Long Grain Wild Rice
Green Beans
Green Salad with Pears and Honey Dressing *
Cheddar Biscuits
Cake (leftovers from the shower)
Spinach (I used red leaf lettuce) pear Salad

Cheddar Biscuits – like Red Lobster’s

To make the biscuits, use a Bisquick mix and make drop biscuits. Add a cup of cheddar cheese. Bake as specified. Brush baked biscuits with mixture of melted butter and garlic powder.

Spinach Pear Salad

2 Tbl. water
1 1/2 Tbl red wine vinegar
1 Tbl olive oil
1 tbl honey
2 tsp Dijon mustard
1/4 tsp black pepper
1 Bosc or Anjou pear, cut into 15 lengthwise slices
1/4 cup thinly sliced red onion

1. Combine first 6 ingredients in a small bowl, stirring with a whisk.
2. Place pear slices in a large bowl. Spoon 1 Tbl dressing over pears; toss to coat. Add remaining dressing, spinach and onion; toss to coat.
Yield: 5 servings

Chicken Fricassee

3 Tbl flour
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp poultry seasoning
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
4 bone-in chicken breast halves, skinned
2 tsp butter
1 1/2 cups chopped onion
1/2 cup chopped celery
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup chicken broth
2 cups Julienne-cut carrot
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley

1. combine first 5 ingredients in a large zip top plastic bag. Add chicken; toss well to coat. Remove chicken from bag; reserve flour mixture. melt butter in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add chicken breasts sides down, saute’ 5 minutes or until chicken is browned. Remove chicken fro pan; keep warm.
2. Add onion, celery, and garlic to pan; saute’ 5-7 minutes, stirring occasionally. Sir in reserved flour mixture, and cook 1 minute. Add broth; bring to a boil. Add carrot. Return chicken to pan, breast sides up. Cover, reduce heat and simmer 25 minutes or until chicken is done. Sprinkle with chopped parsley. Serve over rice, if desired.

To prepare this for Sunday dinner, I did all the browning of the chicken and sauteed the vegetables. I covered it with foil and put the pan in the fridge overnight. Before leaving for church, I put the pan in the oven, covered. I turned the timer on to cook for 45 minutes at 375 degrees, but you could also just turn it on a low setting like 280 and let it cook slowly while you’re away.

The gravy was amazing over the chicken and the rice!

There you have it – my Puff weekend and Sunday dinner. Anyone else out there going through Puff moments? Please also tell us what was cooking in your kitchen recently!

With a Puff in hand,

3 thoughts on “What’s Cookin’ in the Parsonage?”

  1. I really enjoy your blog especially on Monday. Have tried some of the recipes and they were wonderful. Thanks for taking time to share. Bette

    Like

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