Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Homemaking Tip—Hod Podge


Calvin checking on a prime rib before a meeting a few days ago. 

Calvin is not easily daunted. He and a few friends are cooking 200 pounds of brisket for a wedding reception tomorrow night. I was cleaning house on Tuesday and as I was getting ready to wash cupboards and throw the kitchen rug in the washer I thought of the upcoming brisketfest and decided to wait until it was over. I needn’t have waited. He prepped everything outside. I’m always happy to clean up behind him, but I am quite glad a hose suffices this time.

Along the same line, my favorite way to have friends for supper is when it is unplanned. There is no time to fret and worry about whether or not it will taste good or be fancy enough, it is what it is. Tonight was one of those nights. Two different families brought roaster pans over for Calvin to put brisket in and joined us for supper at the last minute. I just added more sauce and meatballs to the pot of spaghetti and we squished all the skinny bottoms onto one bench. It worked perfect.



After reading one of the quarterly Craft-Food magazines, I’ve started adding dry stuffing (instead of crushed crackers or breadcrumbs) to hamburger to make meat loaf. My, it’s good. It’s also cheap. A bag of stuffing at Grocery Outlet was only 25 cents a few weeks ago. That’s a whole lot of meat stretching with good flavor for not very much.



The other night Ande and I made chicken pot pies. She made the pie dough (she makes great crusts, I never fight with her dough) and I made the filling. Not surprisingly they were the best chicken pot pies we’ve ever made. After I boiled the potatoes, carrots, celery, and onions in chicken broth, I drained them. It bothered me to let all the nutrients go, but sometimes consistency and beauty demands it. Then I stirred in a can of cream of chicken soup and a couple of tablespoons of mayonnaise. We poured them into the unbaked pie shells, added top crusts, and baked them for an hour at 350-375 degrees. We made three big pies and four little individual ones so we’d have plenty to share. With the scrap dough I made peach dumplings. I’m sold on pie dumplings because you don’t have to be great with pie dough to have a good pie-ish experience. You just roll your dough out in a circle, put your filling inside of it, gather the dough together like a bag, pinch/twist it closed, and put it in a ramekin to bake. Grace, Ray, Calvin, Ande, and Cali wished I’d have made more than three.



Ounce per ounce body-wash is often more expensive than shampoo, at least Suave shampoo, so I refill the sturdy, body-wash, pump-bottle with Suave shampoo. It’s nice because it cuts down on the containers in the shower too -- one bottle cleans head, shoulders, knees, and toes.

8 comments:

Tyler - Danielle - Emree said...

I love chicken pot pie, but I have never done little pies like that. I am totally sold.

I also love the low expectations of last minute guest. They are always happy with whatever is there.

Lastly, I am always in for a good deal.

Love it!

Julie said...

You should save the stock from the chicken pot pies and freeze it to use in soup later! I'm going to try your chicken pot pie recipe. I've never thought of using mayo in with the veggies. Sounds yummy!

Heather @ Multiple Hats said...

My stomach is rumbling . . .

Derek-Jenny-Kaitlynd-Ethan-Dylan said...

LOVE the idea of using shampoo for body wash! I hope Derek doesn't notice.....man, that is going to save me $10 a month!

Vicki Sabin said...

I'm so excited to have found your blog!!! I have enjoyed reading your latest posts. You are always an inspiration to me. I can't wait until tomorrow....

Becky said...

I always love your homemaking tips!

Can you believe I've never made a homemade pie crust? Or meatloaf for that matter...I cook and bake regularly so this seems odd to me.

Your chicken pot pies look delicious!

Sylvia said...

Hi Jane, This comment is not directly about this post. I just wanted to let you know that I referenced your blog in my blog. http://sylvia-subjecttochangewithoutnotice.blogspot.com/2010/08/pilgrims-progress.html
Rachel pointed me to your blog. We both really enjoy it!

deidra said...

I never think to make meatloaf. Chris is always the one to make it in our house, which works out well. He's generally anti-stuffing, so I wonder if he'd go for your tip.

Mmmm! Pot pie. When the heat and humidity go away, I'll have to make a couple pies. One for the freezer and one for immediate consumption!