MLACS Bakes {GF Chicken Pot Pie}

So I’m not big on all-american comfort foods (I prefer ethnic foods of all varieties) but every once in awhile a craving for chicken pot pie will strike me out of the blue. It hasn’t struck since I’ve been gluten-free (over 2 years now), until recently, and I refused to act on this craving until I found a GF recipe that I like.

As I recall from my youth, pot pie filling is simply: chicken, peas, carrots, and potatoes. But a lot of the recipes added and subtracted to/from this list, and left me feeling disappointed. I finally settled on this recipe:

http://www.tasteofhome.com/recipes/favorite-chicken-potpie

Of course, with some modifications:

1. I used Pamelas gluten-free flour in place of all-purpose flour.

2. I did cut up/boil potatoes, but for veggies I used a succatash mix of peas/carrots/corn, so I did not cook the carrots with the potatoes. Also, I used extra peas.

3. I did not make two 9 inch pies per the recipe–I made one giant deep dish 12 inch pie.

4. I omitted the bottom/base crust and only did a top crust.

5. There was too much gravy and I only used 2/3 of what the recipe yielded for my pie.

6. I used organic low sodium vegetable broth instead of chicken broth (prefer the flavor).

First thing I did was make a batch of GF pie crust using bob’s red mill GF pie crust mix (butter *and* crisco, oh my!) This yielded THE best pie crust I’ve ever had. I used about 2/3 of what the recipe yielded to cover my giant pie, and I’m hoping the leftover is enough to make a small quiche, or maybe even some mini pot pies for lunch for the mommies in my playgroup this week.

Have to say–this chicken pot pie is magnificent! Worth the effort. I will definitely keep this in the rotation and whip it up when we need some TLC. Seriously, after I finished a big bowl of the warm, buttery, carb-y deliciousness, I actually did feel relaxed. I got a massage the day before and it wasn’t as relaxing as this pot pie! From now on I will save my $$$ and instead of spa treatments I will make GF chicken pot pie ❤

**I apologize for not including a picture but we hacked into it as soon as it came out of the oven. Use your imagination!

XOXO,

MLACS

 

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The Present

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I’ve finally got the tree up (artificial, not prepared to battle the baby/dog/cat with sap and pine needles and water). It’s not decorated yet, but I love the soft glow of the lights and their reflection on the picture window in our dining room (which is actually our play room). The mantle is decorated. Stockings are hung. There’s a wreath on our front door and the entryway is flanked by bright red pointsettias. My house is clean, uncluttered, and it smells like pumpkin gingerbread. My mother would be proud. In fact, I’m proud–I’ve made us a home. A place my husband longs for when he’s away. A place my baby is happy to wake up to and explore each day. A place my friends look forward to visiting.

I know how cheesy I sound; forgive me.

Mr. MLACS is home for the entire month of December and I’m excited to spend our first Christmas together as a family of 3 (really 5 because the pets are part of the ohana). It was hard as hell having Mr. MLACS gone for Mothers Day, July 4th, Halloween and Thanksgiving. We made it work, but it was difficult. So this time together feels like a reward for our sacrifices.

We took BG to see The Nutcracker ballet last week! I usually dress her in comfortable sporty clothes, but for this occassion I went ahead and purchased her a beautiful holiday dress from Nordstrom, complete with a little velvet bolero jacket and poufy crinolin underskirt. I bought myself a new dress too, a wrap maternity dress from isabella oliver, because I like the style and it’s easy to discreetly nurse BG in it (yes, I do also hope to one day be pregnant again). BG was a peach and nursed contentedly until intermission. We probably could’ve stayed for the entire performance, but I wasn’t feeling well so we left (BG caught the flu from one of her play groups and passed it along to me). As most of you know, taking BG to The Nutcracker was a dream come true for me, because I go every year (a tradition my Mom started) and my greatest delight was watching the little girls twirl like ballerinas in their holiday dresses at intermission. This then became my greatest heartache after miscarriage and infertility. But now that I have BG my heart is mended. And during intermission I pointed to two little girls twirling excitedly down the aisle to their seats, and I leaned in and whispered to Mr. MLACS “That’s what I come to see”, and he chuckled because he knows. And lots of ladies remarked how precious BG looked in her holiday best. And life was just a bowl of cherries…

Who could ask for anything more?

I dare not.

However…life is not without hardships. My PPA has improved, *yay*. But Mr. MLACS’s job up north has come to an end. And his company doesn’t have a lot of projects right now. And the ones they have do not work for our family. The goal has been to leave the company and find a family-friendly position with a good company and settle down somewhere and buy a house and raise our kid(s). But life is what happens while you’re making plans, eh? The job we seek has not materialized. So we are forced to make some hard choices.

We decided Mr. MLACS will accept a project down south, in a very unsavory area of Texas called “the golden triangle”. The part where Mr. MLACS will actually be working/living is a real sh*thole. I saw a quote online that joked “I guess they named it ‘the golden triangle’ because that sounds better than ‘petrochemical wasteland'”. This being the case, BG and I (and the furries) will remain in the comfort and familiarity of our home in the midwest, until our lease is up in April, and hopefully by then Mr. MLACS will have secured a new position that will allow us to settle down and raise our family. But if not, then we’ll pack up our home and move to Houston, and Mr. MLACS will come home on the weekends, until we figure this out. 

I’m nervous. I’ve still never left BG with anyone and I do fine, but how will I handle 3 straight months by myself? I figure military wives do it, but they have an infrastructure of support they can tap into. I will be alone. I also worry about Mr. MLACS, because although his vitals are good, he has been backsliding on his previous weightloss and re-gained weight due to stress eating. How will he handle being alone in that sh*thole for 3 months without his family? Struggling to find a new job while working 12-14 hour days? Will he be able to practice self discipline and work on getting healthy while under all this pressure? Or will he crash and burn? I have to accept that I have no control over whether he finds a better job, and no control over his choices concerning his health. It’s hard not to push him and not to resent him, because if he doesn’t get it together then I am screwed and so is our kid. I believe he has what it takes, but does he believe in himself??? Jury is out.

So I’m going to enjoy Christmas, avoid worrying about things beyond my control, and focus on making memories with Mr. MLACS and BG. Because yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, but today is a gift–that’s why they call it *the present*.

XOXO,

MLACS