This post was sponsored by Hilary’s Eat Well. Thank you for supporting the partnerships that allow Brewing Happiness to grow and exist. xoxo.
Vegetarian Pot Pie Casserole with Broccoli Casserole Bites
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 sweet onion, diced
- 1 cup carrots, chopped
- 2 cups broccoli florets
- 1 russet potato, peeled and cubed
- 2 cups vegetable broth
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
- 1/2 teaspoon coriander
- 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- a pinch of cayenne
- 2 tablespoons flour, any kind
- 1 15 oz can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 1/2 cups gouda cheese, shredded
- 1 package Hilary's Broccoli Casserole Bites
- Preheat your oven to 400.
- In a large pot, heat olive oil, garlic and diced onion over med-low heat for 3-5 minutes.
- Add in potatoes, broccoli, and carrots. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Add in vegetable broth, tomato paste, apple cider vinegar, turmeric, coriander, smoked paprika, salt, pepper and cayenne. Mix until well combined. Increase the heat to medium-high and cook until boiling.
- Reduce heat to low, add in flour and cannellini beans and mix well.
- Remove from heat and transfer mixture to a rectangular baking sheet. (I used an 11x7.5.) Top with a layer of shredded gouda, followed by Broccoli Casserole Bites. Bake for 20-25 minutes.
- EAT UP.
When I moved to Atlanta I knew two people, my sister and her husband (and their two dogs.) Which was comforting but also isolating. They’re amazing people, and I love them dearly but they’re VERY different from me. They’ve got a white picket fence type of situation and I’m more likely to picket at an Aleppo protest. Ya feel me? So I knew that I needed to venture out and make some friends of my own. But where do you start when you live and work from a one bedroom apartment in a city you don’t know? Literally I have no idea. Still don’t.
I tried Bumble BFF, but just ended up wanting to run away from every girl who liked, “brunch, running, her dog, drinking wine and watching the Bachelorette.” Sorry if that’s how you roll, but that’s just not my ideal hangout time. So I ditched that idea and turned to forcing bloggers I found on the internet to go to lunch or coffee with me.
I did make some friends this way. I’ve met an amazing community of ladies around Atlanta who all understand the isolation of blogging, and the exhaustion of keeping up with “the algorithm.” But still, we’re all adults here, and holy moly I had no idea how hard it was make and keep new friends at this stage in life. We’re all so busy with our own schedules it’s hard to commit to adding another person to the lineup – especially if you aren’t even sure you’ll get along.
So I spent a good amount of time alone this year. Making full vegetarian pot pie casseroles for myself, and sitting alone at my 10 seat table. That makes me sound like a sad, pathetic human, but for the most part it wasn’t. I learned the joy of making food for myself, and I learned how to be good company to myself.
But now, a year into my Atlanta journey, I have a *few* amazing new friends. Not a ton, but enough that I get to treasure the moments when I make a casserole and actually get to share it. Having just one other person at my table makes it feel full. Because I now see the immense value in that connection, and I cherish it. It doesn’t come often in this life, but when it does we should hold it tight and make it pot pie casserole. (And add some Hilary’s Broccoli Casserole Bites to really prove that we love them.) Adulthood is hard enough. Don’t go through it friendless and casserole-less.