Amazing Homemade Chicken Pot Pie Recipe

Best Chicken Pot Pie

My husband is still talking about this delicious chicken recipe!  For relatively little effort you will be rewarded with a large quantity of (and I feel confident stating this) the best chicken pot pie ever:)

The basis of the recipe is from the Epicurious website but I tweaked the heck out of it to simplify it.  Here are some highlights:

  • I used store bought, refrigerator pie crusts.  You could also use puff pastry sheets (from the dessert section of the supermarkets frozen aisles) with excellent results.
  • I used cut up chicken from a supermarket rotisserie chicken.
  • I used canned chicken stock (preferably low-sodium) instead of making my own.

It’s the filling of this chicken pot pie recipe that is the star:



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Buffalo Chicken Risotto – Soooooo good!

Let me confess that I’ve NEVER had buffalo chicken wings or chip.  Never really appealed to me.  But when I read over this recipe it seemed to scream at me to make it.  The appeal was the flavorful broth that the risotto cooked in, a combination of  hot sauce, chicken broth, lager beer, honey and a touch of Worcestershire.  And it did not disappointment.  In fact – this might belong up there in my top 10 favorite recipes – it’s that good.

The recipe is simple to make.  Like any risotto, it just takes a bit of time and a stir ever few minutes.  I doubled the amount of chicken that the original recipe called – I wanted this to be a hearty entree.  When serving, it’s delicious with the crumbled blue cheese or without.

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Crispy Salmon

Crispy Salmon Recipe

My all time favorite way to cook salmon is what I call “Crispy Salmon”.  As you can see, the flesh forms a succulent, crispy crust that is also incredibly flavorful.  The amazing part of this pan-fried, healthful salmon recipe is that there is no oil (olive or otherwise) in this recipe.  The only ingredients are salmon, salt and pepper!  How can this be?  Salmon is an oily fish (good oils!) and because of this, the oil exudes as it is cooked and the salmon actually cooks in its own juices.

fried salmon recipe

Also – its a cinch to cook.  The method employed also works for chicken and pork.  Read on…..

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Thai Peanut Chicken

This spicy chicken with peanut sauce is easy to make and bursting with flavor.  Adapt from a recipe from Tasty Kitchen, we’ve added a sauce to it that is perfect when served over rice or noodles.  Leftovers are GREAT!

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High Heat Roast Chicken and Potatoes

I’m pretty sure this oven roast chicken recipe will fast become a favorite.  The skin is super crispy while the chicken remains deliciously moist.  And as an added treat, the potatoes explode with flavor because they are basted* in schmaltz (chicken fat) throughout the cooking time.  And after you make it the first time – it will become a snap to make!

I learned how to make this high heat chicken recipe from Cooks Illustrated magazine although I have adapted it (by skipping the brine)** to make it a quick meal to prepare.  The chicken is essentially ‘butterflied’ (laid-open flat) which enables it to cook much faster than normal.  The sliced potatoes lay below the chicken and are cooked in the juices that drip down as the chicken cooks.

Below I’ll give you step-by-step instructions for this outstanding yet easy roast chicken recipe:

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Asian Inspired Chicken Meatballs with Citrus Sauce

These meatballs absolutely burst with flavor!  I’m embarrassed to admit that the first time I made this chicken meatball recipe  I loved it so much that I ate 7 meatballs in one sitting (while my husband ate 3).  That’s how good these are.  Since then I’ve managed some restraint ONLY because I ended up being uncomfortably full.  And I usually reserve that feeling for just once a year (Thanksgiving).  But these Asian chicken meatballs are that good.

You can serve these as appetizers (you may want to make them a bit smaller) or as the main meal.  They are super easy to throw together; you can do so earlier in the day and just keep them refrigerated until your ready to cook (bring to room temperature before cooking).

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Oven Baked Barbeque Ribs with Homemade Barbeque Sauce

Home Made Ribs

For this fabulous homemade ribs and barbecue sauce recipe, and the mouth watering pictures, I’d like to introduce you to my good friend and fellow blogger, Sally.  Her blog, Bewitching Kitchen, is one that you definitely want to check out!  Sally is a world traveler (she’s lived in Brazil, Paris California and Oklahoma), has a fascinating background as a biochemist and molecular biologist and, to top it all off, she is an AMAZING cook!  I know because we have been swapping recipes for years!

Although these Oven Baked Barbeque Ribs from Sally look and taste like you spent a significant time standing over your grill, they are actually surprisingly hands off because they are oven-baked which renders them fall-of-the-bone moist but lacquered with a crisp crust bursting with flavor.  To top it all off, she includes her easy homemade barbeque sauce recipe.

Baby Back Ribs Oven

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Mexican Salad – A Feast!

My love affair with this salad began 30 years ago at Michigan State University at a great Mexican restaurant, “El Azteco”, that remains an institution there.  Called a Topopo Salad (Topopo means “Volcano”), it has often been described as a Mexican chicken salad on steriods.  One look at it and you’ll understand.

It starts with a base of refried beans and then moves on to melted cheese, then guacamole.  The salad is a combination of shredded iceberg lettuce, tomatoes, green onion, jalapenos, shredded chicken and green peas and it’s dressed with a light vinaigrette and topped with Parmesan cheese.  At least I think it is and that’s how I’ve created our home version of it.  And I’m pretty sure that this will fast become a favorite of your home too!

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Buttermilk Fried Chicken – Extra Crispy

Let me start off by saying “If I can make this incredible crispy fried chicken recipe than so can you”.  Why do I say it like that?  Because I’ve never really deep fried anything before this recipe.  Buttermilk fried chicken, something my husband and I pine over, is reserved to once or twice a year at a restaurant that specializes in it.  I stay away from it more from fear of botching it up than anything else.  But I read so many fantastic reviews of the buttermilk fried chicken recipe from Chef Thomas Keller (of the famous French Laundry restaurant in CA and Ad Hoc in NYC) that I decided I had to give it a try.  And it is everything people have raved about and more!  In a word? OUTSTANDING!

Yes – the recipe seems long and that’s because of the brine.  But don’t worry if you don’t have all the ingredients for the brine or you don’t want to buy them all (it can get a bit expensive with the bay leaves and herbs).  I have made it using only a couple of bay leaves, half the lemons and just the rosemary and it is still just as delicious as ever.  Also – the recipe below is for basically two whole chickens but it can easily be cut in half (the brine as well as the batter ingredients).

Keys to success for this recipe: 1) You can’t skip the brine.  That’s what keeps the chicken so incredibly moist and flavors the chicken.  Although it seems like a lot of work it really isn’t.  You basically throw the ingredients in a pot, boil them for a minute and then chill before using.  2) You should start this a day ahead to make the brine.  If you are making this for an evening meal you won’t put the chicken in until the day you are going to cook it – but the brine, once made, takes quite a bit of time too cool.  Definitely easier to do it a day ahead. 3)  Make the brine in a pot large enough to hold the chicken – that’s a time saver and less dishes to wash.  4) Do include all the ingredients in the batter mixture – it gives that crispy crust SO much flavor. 5) Do set up the dipping station (it will consist of three bowls – two for the flour mixture and one for the buttermilk) – it will make things so much easier!

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Veal Chop Recipe

Although my husbands had many ‘favorite’ meals – this might be his very, very favorite.  It’s a very simple recipe, in fact, more technique than recipe.  Basically you start with a good veal loin chop, season it with salt and pepper, cook it in a bit of olive oil to medium doneness and voila!  Juicy, flavorful – simply wonderful.

However, I usually take one more step.  Once I remove the veal chop from the pan, I deglaze the pan with a bit of heavy cream (also known as ‘whipping cream’.  Typically just 3 Tbsp. or so for two chops.  I swirl the heavy cream in the hot pan and it picks up intensely flavored little brown bits from when the veal cooked (called ‘fond’*).  A bit of salt and freshly ground pepper and you have a simple yet decadent sauce for your veal chops.

Let’s talk about technique.  Basically you want a nice sear on both sides of the meat.  To accomplish this you need to start of with a dry piece of meat, otherwise the veal will steam when when it hits a hot pan, not sear.  When you remove the veal loin chops from their package simply pat dry both sides of each chop with paper towel.

When it comes to how long to cook the chop that really depends on thickness.  If your chop is 1″ thick or less, cooking each side 4 minutes or so over medium-high heat will provide you with medium done veal chop.  If you have a thicker chop, however, there are two ways to finish cooking it.  For the inexperienced cook I would finish it off in a 375 F oven for another 5 to 10 minutes depending just how thick your steak is.  If you are used to telling the level of doneness of a steak by ‘feeling it’ – after the first side is seared I would flip the chop over, cook on high for a few minutes, and then turn the range to medium-low and cook until its done to your likening.  Being able to judge a steak’s level of doneness by feeling its firmness takes a bit of practice  but once you get the hang of it you’ll love it.  Basically, if the steak is very soft to the touch it is rare.  As it firms the level of doneness increases.  When it feels like the firm part of your palm right below your thumb – well that’s well done.

One more thing.  You’ll want to make this in either an metal or caste iron pan; not a non-stick.  The latter are not meant for high-heat cooking unless there is liquid in the pan (doing so will ruin its non-stick surface)

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