The dinner that was a hit was chicken pot pie:
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 to 1/2 cups shortening
1/2 cup cold water
In a large bowl, cut the shortening into the flour using a pastry cutter. Keep cutting, working the loose flour in until the mixture resembles corn meal. Add the cold water 1 tablespoon at a time, either stirring with a wooden spoon or using your fingers, until the dough gathers into a neat ball. Divide the dough in two, place one half on a floured board and roll out and fit into a deep dish pie pan. (thickness is a matter of taste) roll the other half and keep ready for the top crust. I keep the prepared pan and the top crust in the fridge until I am ready to use them.
1 1/2 pound skinless, boneless chicken breast halves - cubed (uncooked)
1 cup sliced frozen carrots
1 cup frozen green peas
1 cup frozen corn
1/3 cup butter
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon celery seed
3 cups chicken broth
2/3 cup milk
Place the chicken into a saucepan and add enough water to cover. Bring to a boil and simmer for 10-15 minutes or until chicken in cooked through. Drain and add the chicken back to the warm pot. Off the heat add the frozen veggies to the hot chicken and stir. Set aside.
Melt the butter and whisk in the flour to make a paste called a roux (roo). Gradually whisk in chicken broth being sure the lumps are all whisked away. Bring to a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally until the gravy is thickened. Whisk in milk.
Place the chicken and vegetable mixture into the prepared crust then pour the hot gravy over. Place top crust and seal edges.
Bake at 425 for 20 to 30 minutes or until crust is brown and filling is bubbly. Let cool 10 minutes before serving.
Put white vinegar into the rinse aid compartment. Mix equal parts borax and baking soda. Use as you would powdered detergent, but do not fill the second cup.
Once every six weeks or so, you'll want to use a standard dishwasher detergent to keep the dishwasher free of build up.
I've been finding it very fulfilling and satisfying making things this week. While I've accepted the fact that's it's not physically possible for me to keep up with the house, cook meals, help with homework, lead Brownie meetings and sleep, I have really enjoyed creating meals from scratch. There are lots of leftovers and they taste better in general. I put on my apron and my lipstick and feel very homey and June Cleaver-like. As if I am tangibly showing my family the affection I feel for them by putting the effort into making satisfying nourishment for them.
The home made cleaning stuff gives me the hippie-dippie warm fuzzies. Maybe global warming is a big deal, maybe it's not, but my small efforts can't help and might help on a collective level.
And here is the latest work in progress:
Ecstasy at Eeyore's