Monday, October 13, 2014

An actual food picture in a food post!

Ignore the 1970's harvest gold countertop; concentrate on
the 1970's comfort food.
Wow - an actual food picture! This is the 1960's or 1970's comfort food, a chicken biscuit casserole. This was Sunday's dinner, plus lunches for today and tomorrow (and would have been for Wednesday, too, if I hadn't been ravenous yesterday because I'd skipped a real lunch).

The topping, as you can see, consists of refrigerated buttermilk biscuits. When I'm not in a hurry, I've made them from scratch rather than use the canned variety (the original recipe used all the available shortcuts - canned biscuits, canned peas, canned carrots, canned beans...we can do so much better today, with only a little more work).

Underneath the biscuity goodness is a creamy white sauce filled with onions, peas, carrots, green beans and (already cooked and diced - this is a great recipe for leftovers) chicken. I deviated a bit from the recipe and added few chopped up mushrooms. Prep is simple. Saute the onions in 2 tablespoons of butter. Add half a cup of flour and cook for a bit, stirring constantly. Add 1/2 cup milk plus about 1 1/2 cups chicken broth (I ended up adding more, as I put more than the called for quantities of "stuff" in, and everything got very thick in a hurry). Stir and cook until it's bubbly and thickened a bit. Add the carrots, peas, beans and chicken and stir to combine. Split the biscuits in half horizontally (I don't bother, I just leave the dish in the oven a bit longer to make sure the biscuits cook all the way through) and lay on top. Pop in a 375 degree oven for twenty minutes or until the biscuits are well browned.

I love the enamel over cast iron cookware, especially for things like this that start stove top and end in the oven. No washing a pot plus a casserole dish. If you bring the pot to the table to serve from, the food inside stays warm quite a bit longer thanks to cast iron's heat retentive properties. Considering you can't use abrasives to scrub them out, they clean up pretty easily as well.

This is also an unusual french oven. The usual shape for one this size is a smaller diameter, with higher sides. Have I mentioned I'm short? So short, in fact, that I can't see into the 6 quart stock pot when it sits on the front burner of the stove unless I stand on my toes. This particular french oven - and only the one in this volume - is available in a bigger diameter, with correspondingly lower sides. Yay for someone who understands short cooks!

Maybe more pictures if the next few nights' cooking turns out the way I hope.


melissa said...

I love chicken pot pie. We make ours in a huge pan (sadly not decorative), and sometimes I do a rolled crust, and if I feel overly busy, make biscuits. Kids help with this, so it's not so labor wearing.


melissa said...

I'm sad that you've skipped some days, but I don't hate you for it. ;)

Diane said...

I could do a rolled crust - I used to be pretty good at pie crust. Canned biscuits are so much easier, and just as tasty.