Cardio and Cooking: Mershed Perderders

Since I am now completely responsible for feeding myself, I can only buy a few things that I like to eat per week, or else food will go unused, turn bad, and then be wasted. As a result, I have been suffering from various forms of withdrawal. At the end of last week, it was my Alberta beef. Oh how I longed for that sweet, juicy, red, delicious Alberta beef. So, on my grocery haul, I purchased a sirloin steak from Loblaws. Since the following day was the "best before date", it only cost $2 :D Today, I had an impulse buy problem. I meant to just go to Loblaws to find foil protectors for our stove burners, which I did end up getting, but I also got potatoes (and other things, but that's all beside the point). I don't know if I've mentioned this in my food blog before, but I have a very deep love for potatoes. I'm pretty sure that the starch from potatoes runs further and more frequently than the rice starch in my not so Asian blood. And so, I decided to make myself a scrumptious chicken pot pie with a mashed potato topping...

Things I have learned today about potatoes:
- Who am I kidding? I didn't learn anything new about potatoes. I think I've just come to love them more than before. Below are some things I do know about potatoes...
- Potatoes are so versatile. You can boil them, steam them, mash them, bake them, fry them, roast them, or grill them, and they will still be delicious.
- In French, pomme de terre means "apple of the ground". This kind of makes sense because when raw, the texture is very much like that of an apple.
- Potatoes are great for stews and curries. They melt into the smooth, creamy texture, and don't take away from the flavour of everything else going on. Because of the starch, they also act as a thickening agent in the mix.
- Potatoes can apparently be made into bread according to P. I'll have to try that some time...
- Potatoes are one of the best comfort foods ever. (To me, it is the best ever.)

The best cure to potato withdrawal. I love mashed potatoes. 

The masterpiece. Thankfully, it tasted good enough to make it worth the work and wait.

Ready to indulge in my chicken pot pie and a simple salad along with my new friend, Netflix. I am now near the end of "How I Met Your Mother" Season 5. Balsamic vinegar actually compliments mashed potatoes very well too. P makes this amazing salad dressing with balsamic in it, and it is sooo good with mashed potatoes as well. That, and salmon. 

I prrrrobably could have packed away half of it for tomorrow, but why would I? Mind you, I still have a rice bowlful of mashed potatoes leftover in the fridge.
Chicken Pot Pie with a Mashed Potato Topping for One 
*Approximately 2 servings*
**Note: I ate the whole thing for dinner along with some salad. I am on the border of feeling guilty and not. Nonetheless, it was pretty darn good.**

Vegetable oil
Chicken stock
1 chicken breast
3 white potatoes
2 Tbsp margarine
Unsweetened soymilk
Salt and pepper
1 cup broccoli florets
3 white mushrooms
1 green onion
3 cloves garlic
1 Tbsp all-purpose flour

1. Slice mushrooms and set aside. (I sliced them so that it was about 5 slices per mushroom. You don't want them to be too thin this time because they're in the filling of your pie.) If you haven't already, cut the broccoli into small florets.
2. Boil a medium pot of water on high heat. While boiling, peel, and dice your potatoes into bite-sized chunks.
3. Add 2/3 of your potato chunks into the boiling water and cook until you can easily puncture the pieces with a chopstick (or fork). Once cooked through, drain, and mash. Add margarine while mashing potatoes to add flavour. Also add a couple splashes of soymilk to make it creamier.
4. While the potatoes are cooking, also chop your garlic and green onion and set aside.
5. Add oil and half of the chopped garlic to a pan over medium heat until slightly browned, and add to the mashed potatoes, stirring evenly.
6. Add the other half of the chopped garlic to the pan with some more oil, add the last 1/3 of the potato chunks. Pour in a splash of chicken stock until about half way up the potato chunks, and simmer.
7. Add the flour into the mixture and stir until just thickened. Add mushrooms and another splash of chicken stock. When bubbling, add broccoli florets, and remove from heat when just cooked. Pour the mixture into a small nonstick loaf pan and spread evenly. (Unless you're fancy and wealthy enough to have ramekins. Then you could fill a couple of those. I was trying to be innovative :/)
8. Pre-heat your oven to 350 F. Add some oil to the pan over medium heat. Dice the chicken breast into bite-sized chunks and add to the pan. Cook until slightly browned on one side, and turn each piece to cook the other side. Add salt and pepper to taste and a sprinkle of rosemary. Stir fry until just cooked. Add into the small loaf pan on top of the vegetables.
9. Top off the pie with mashed potatoes, and spread it evenly. Chop the green onion, and sprinkle the pieces over the mash. Bake for about 15 minutes.
10. Remove from the oven, and serve with a salad or your choice of side. (I went with a simple salad of chopped romaine lettuce, some canola oil, and balsamic vinegar. Mmm~ Isn't comfort food just awesome?

I am going to sleep so well tonight. :)


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