main dish · vegetarian

Meatless Comfort Food – Vegetable Pot Pie

Vegetable pot pie 1

We are meat eaters at my house.  We love it all!  However, I recently needed a recipe for a vegetarian family, so I went to Pinterest and landed on a recipe by Ina Garten (where you can never go wrong!)  I changed it a little bit to make it just what I thought my vegetarian friends would enjoy.

Whenever I make a meal for others, I try to fix the same thing for our supper.  Even loving meat as we do, we really enjoyed this Vegetable Pot Pie!

For the crust, I followed the recipe exactly and it was perfect! It was flaky and so good! It is made in the food processor and that makes it a cinch to bring together! For our pies, I made individual servings.  I made my friends’ in an oblong dish.

Here’s the easy recipe:

Vegetable Pot Pie

Ingredients

6 tablespoons unsalted butter

2 cups Frozen pearl onions

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

2 1/2 cups chicken stock

1 1/2 teaspoons salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

3 tablespoons heavy cream

1 1/2 cups peeled, 3/4-inch-diced butternut squash – (I really loved the addition of the butternut squash in this!  Did you know you can cut it up and freeze it to use later?  I was glad I already had it prepped! )

1 1/2 cups frozen small whole onions (1/2 pound)

1 Cup frozen Peas – You can vary what your family likes! The peas and corn were some of my additions to the original recipe

1 Cup frozen Corn

1/2 cup minced flat-leaf parsley

For the pastry:

3 cups all-purpose flour

1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 cup vegetable shortening

1/4 pound cold unsalted butter, diced

1/2 to 2/3 cup ice water

1 egg beaten with 1 tablespoon water, for egg wash

Flaked sea salt and cracked black pepper

Directions

  1. Melt the butter in a large pot over medium heat. Add the onions and saute until translucent, 10 to 15 minutes. Add the flour, reduce the heat to low, and cook for 3 more minutes, stirring occasionally. Slowly add the stock, salt, and pepper, and bring to a boil. Simmer for 5 more minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the heavy cream and season to taste. The sauce should be highly seasoned.
  2. Cook the squash in boiling salted water for 10 minutes. Lift out with a sieve. Add the mixed vegetables, onions, and parsley to the sauce and mix well.
  3. For the pastry, mix the flour, salt, and baking powder in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a metal blade. Add the shortening and butter and mix quickly with your fingers until each piece is coated with flour. Pulse 10 times, or until the fat is the size of peas. With the motor running, add the ice water; process only enough to moisten the dough and have it just come together. Dump the dough out onto a floured board and knead quickly into a ball. Wrap the dough in plastic and allow it to rest in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
  4. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
  5. Divide the filling equally among 4 ovenproof bowls. Divide the dough into quarters and roll each piece into an 8-inch circle. Brush the outside edges of each bowl with the egg wash, then place the dough on top. Trim the circle to 1/2-inch larger than the top of the bowl. Crimp the dough to fold over the sides, pressing it to make it stick. Brush the dough with egg wash and make 3 slits in the top. Sprinkle with sea salt and cracked pepper. Place on a baking sheet and bake for 1 hour, or until the top is golden brown and the filling is bubbling hot.

vegetable pot pie 5

I might not be a lover of a vegetarian lifestyle, but I’m definitely a fan of this Vegetable Pot Pie!  Are you a carnivorous?  Even if you are, you need to try this great recipe!

Denise

breakfast · Make-Ahead

Friday Favorites

Hi Friends and Happy Friday!  I wanted to share some of my recent favorite things that might help and refresh you as they have me!

  • Let’s start with a reminder about a hot, filling breakfast.  This is an important meal, but it can be difficult to find time to put it together on busy days.  Last year I shared these easy Instant Oatmeal Jars that make having a hot, delicious, filling breakfast super simple!

I pulled my small jars out this week and put several breakfasts together in just minutes.  All you have to do is add a cup of hot water and let it sit for 4-5 minutes!

oatmeal 2

Sure, you could use those Oatmeal packets, but who likes eating paste first thing in the morning?  (Sense a little sarcasm there?! )  I’m not a fan, but these instant jars are creamy and delicious!

oatmeal 1

  • I recently found a Podcast that has been so encouraging!  Donna Otto’s podcasts on Modern Homemakers is full of biblical wisdom and practical, helpful tools!  She speaks on child training, marriage, Christian growth, organization, and current events.  I’m sure you’ll find something that will be a blessing to you!
  • My new Fall dining table centerpiece is made up of all things I had on hand.  My parents had just given me a bag of their beautiful pine cones and I piled them onto the wooden board I had.  I added some pumpkins, both fabric and metal and also added some softness with a cloth napkin.  The flickering candle adds another measure of softness.  It’s rustic, it’s earthy, and I love it!fall centerpiece 2
  • One last thing is the reminder I set on my phone.  This isn’t for my afternoon nap, rather it is a reminder to pray for a lost individual.  I have it set for 1:00 in the afternoon.When I hear the notification,
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    I immediately stop and pray for one minute for a friend who needs Christ.  This has been such a blessing to me!
    Do you have a special burden for a lost individual?  Can I encourage you to set an alarm or reminder for 1:00 p.m.and pray for one minute?  Oh sure, we pray for them at other times, but I’m consecrating this time until Christmas to pray for my friend.  I can’t wait to see what God is doing and how He will answer these prayers!

What’s your favorite new thing?

Denise

 

Responding to trials · womanhood · Work

Dealing With the Mundane Or Critical Times With Purpose

What mundane things does this day find you doing?  Going to work?  Washing dishes?  Caring for a baby or toddler?  Cleaning up a mess?  Perhaps yesterday was the very same and tomorrow will follow suit.  As you trod through your days, what guides your steps?  What makes you do the next thing and the next?

There are also those days when the situations makes your heart race and your steps quicken.  We gasp at the thought of those days that are marked by trial and difficulty.  How will you respond?  What will keep you from coming apart?

Proverbs 4:11-12 gives good encouragement about how we can do more than just survive both kinds of days.  Watch the video below to hear the wisdom we get from God’s Word.

Where does today find you – walking the monotonous, plodding steps? Or are you running in a trial?  I pray you now have the wisdom to know how to make the most of each kind of day so that you know what to do next and how to keep from stumbling.

God has a purpose for today.  Make it count for His glory.

Denise Signature 150 px

Appetizer · Fast dessert · pumpkin

Pumpkin Monday – Easy Pumpkin Dip

pumpkin dip 2a

For the last feature of Pumpkin Monday, we’ll close out with the EASIEST three-ingredient Pumpkin Dip.  This is so fast to whip up!  You can refrigerate it to let it firm up, but we also found it delicious immediately!

I came upon this recipe on Pinterest where there were LOTS of variations, and then I added my own touch to it by having to improvise.  The recipe calls for Cool Whip, which would work great.  I had fresh whipping cream on hand…and that’s never a bad thing!  I whipped up the cream with about 2 Tablespoons powdered sugar and it was perfect!  This would be a great appetizer before Thanksgiving, or even as one of the desserts!  It would be so easy to keep these three ingredients on hand so you could pull a fast treat together in a snap!

pumpkin dip 3

Here’s the simple recipe:

Pumpkin Dip

1 -15 oz. can pumpkin puree
1 -8 oz. container Cool Whip, thawed – (Or use 1 pint Whipping cream sweetened with 2-4 Tbl.  Powdered sugar)
1 package 1.5 oz. Vanilla Instant Pudding Mix
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice (optional, but adds great flavor!)

Directions: Cream together all ingredients with an electric mixer until well combined and fluffy. Chill in the fridge until ready to serve. Serve with Vanilla Wafers, Cookies, or Graham Crackers.

pumpkin dip 1

I love entertaining in the fall because you can really keep things simple.  Why not host dinner and serve a great salad, an award-winning (but easy) soup, purchased rolls and this Pumpkin Dip and coffee for dessert?

With love from my country kitchen,

Denise Signature 150 px

Marriage · Refreshment in marriage · Wife's Role

Three Things You Can Do TODAY To Improve Your Marriage

improve Your Marriage

Like any relationship, marriage can get into a rut.  It sounds the same as when you hit those rumble strips on the interstate.  It’s irritating, and it makes you move over, but often it’s not long before you hear that roar again.  Why?  Because you’re kind of daydreaming your way through your marriage.

It’s easy to “fall asleep at the wheel” and not make the efforts in your relationship that you used to make when things were new and fresh.  But I have good news for you today!  If you’re still breathing and your husband also has breath, things can change TODAY!  Let me make three simple suggestions – all that are doable today and cost nothing except your intentionality!

  1. SMILE DAILY (use your lips and your eyes to smile!)
    When he walks in the door.  Smile.
    While you’re listening to him.  Smile.
    When you’re telling him about your day.  Smile.
    When you see him across the room.  Smile.
    It’s easier to be too busy to even look up at one another.  It’s easier to furrow our brows and scowl.  SMILE instead.
    A merry heart doeth good like a medicine.  Proverbs 17:22
  2. MAKE MORE DEPOSITS INTO YOUR MARRIAGE THAN WITHDRAWALS EACH DAY
    Deposit a compliment instead of criticism.  Instead of fussing about the negative thing you’re thinking about, give a compliment of something in which he made you proud.
    Deposit help instead of looking to receive help. I believe husbands should help their wife, but what would happen if we volunteered to run an errand, lift a load, or do a chore for him?  Would we look like Christ in our sacrifice?
    Deposit affection instead of pulling away physically and emotionally.  Put away that cold shoulder, little peck, or icy back.  Pull the wall down with the warmth of your affection.  
    Romans 12:10  Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love; in honour preferring one another.
  3. PRAY FOR YOUR HUSBAND FOR AT LEAST FIVE MINUTES EVERY DAY.
    Pray about the things that irritate you.
    Pray about the weaknesses in your relationship.
    Pray for his burdens, pressures and obligations.
    Pray for your hearts to be knit together stronger than ever.
    Luke 18:1 – Men (women) aught always to pray and not to faint.

Dear wife, I’m convinced that if we would practice these three initiatives DAILY we would have happy husbands, which would equal happy wives, and that boils down to a happy marriage!  Try it and tell me about your results!

Refresh your marriage TODAY!

Denise Signature 150 px

 

 

God's Will · Proverbs

God’s Bulldozer

Can you think of a time that you were desperate to know God’s will?  I remember scenarios such as

my senior year of high school,

plans for college,

the matter of marriage,

where my husband would pastor,

a teaching job that I was offered,

opportunities to serve the Lord…

and on an on the situations go in which I needed to know what God wanted me to do.

Knowing God’s will seems so foggy.  I often wished the Lord would just write it in the Continue reading “God’s Bulldozer”

breakfast · pumpkin

Pumpkin Monday – Waffles!

pumpkin waffle 2

What’s better than a good breakfast?  Sharing it with friends!  We had the blessing of doing just that this weekend.

Today’s pumpkin theme take us to the breakfast table where yummy Pumpkin Waffles bring fall to your morning.  Since we had a guest this weekend I wanted to have something a little special to start their day.

My menu included: 

Pumpkin Waffles
Bacon
Fruit topped with yogurt and granola
Coffee

I hope my breakfast made our guest feel as glad to be with us as we were to have him here!

pumpkin waffle 3
Rand Hummel, from The Wilds of New England was here for the weekend.  He attended a wedding and preached in our church. We were thankful to be able to return some of the hospitality he and his sweet wife, Amber showed us when we were in New England in September!

Many Pumpkin Waffle recipes I looked at had the complaint that the waffles weren’t crispy.  My remedy was making them ahead of time, freezing them and then popping them into the toaster before eating.  They were perfect!  To do that I:

  1. Let the waffles cool on a cooling rack.

pumpkin waffle 4

2.  Put waxed paper between the waffles and layered them in a Ziploc Bag. Then I popped them into the freezer until the next day!  I simply toasted them in the toaster until they were crispy.

pumpkin waffle 6

 

Pumpkin Waffles

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1-1/4 cups buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup fresh or canned pumpkin
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • Butter and maple syrup, optional

Directions

  • In a large bowl, combine the first nine ingredients. In a small bowl, whisk the eggs, buttermilk, pumpkin and melted butter. Stir into dry ingredients just until moistened.  Note:  I substituted the cinnamon, ginger and cloves with 1 1/2 tsp Pumpkin Pie Spice
  • Bake in a preheated waffle iron according to manufacturer’s directions until golden brown. (I used a Belgian Waffle Maker) Serve with butter and syrup if desired.

pumpkin waffle 5

pumpkin waffle 1

These waffles have a nice pumpkin flavor, helped by the spices.  I love having homemade waffles in my freezer ready for a quick breakfast.  In thirty minutes you can whip these up and stick them away – or eat right away!  It’ll be a great start to your day!!

Happy Monday, Pumpkin!

Denise