Introduction: An Easy, Foolproof Meal Designed to Impress!

In this instructable we will guide you in the making of an easy, foolproof meal designed to impress your significant other, friends, and family with little effort or skill. This meal is composed of a delicious, simple soup, homemade bread, one fancy cocktail, and a homey dessert. If you're worried about lacking cooking skills, have no fear! Our recipes are designed to be simple, yet impressive.

For Cream of Chicken and Wild Rice Soup use steps 1-7.
For Homemade Artisan Bread use steps 8-13.
For Bomb Pop Drink use steps 14-18.
For just Shortcake Waffles use steps 19-21.

Step 1: Assemble Your Ingredients

To begin with, we will be making a Cream of Chicken and Wild Rice Soup. This recipe is easy and calls for ingredients that can be found in any grocery store. When making this soup, plan on about 30 minutes of hands on activity and 40 minutes of cook time. Keep in mind that once you have all of your vegetables chopped, you can start cooking and do your hands on time during your cook time.

1 cooked chicken; de-boned and shredded (we suggest rotisserie chicken as an easy, flavorful option)
2 lbs of baby carrots, chopped
1 head of celery, chopped
1 12 oz package of mushrooms, chopped
1 shallot, chopped
1 box of quick cooking wild rice (we suggest Uncle Bens)
1/2 cup of flour
1 8 oz container of sour cream
1 16 oz bag of frozen peas
3-4 cans of chicken broth
Olive Oil

You will also need:
1 knife
1 large soup pot
1 cutting board
1-2 mixing bowls to hold prepared vegetables
1 large spoon to stir with

Step 2: Chop Your Veggies!

You should begin by preparing your veggies. This involves washing, slicing, and dicing as needed.

You should begin by washing your celery in cold water to remove any dirt. You may then trim off both ends, or simply remove the leaves if you wish to avoid waste and don't mind the appearance. Next cut the celery in half lengthwise, this will leave you with smaller pieces with less work. You may then chop these long pieces into small 1/2 inch to 1 inch segments. Once finished, move your chopped celery to a bowl to make room for the carrots on the cutting board.

Chop your baby carrots into 3-4 pieces each. It's best to make them similarly sized to the celery for even cooking.

You may slice your mushrooms or chop them into small pieces. If you have picky eaters who dislike mushrooms, it may be best to chop these fine or omit them. This soup is very suitable to omissions and substitutions  so adventurous cooks may change ingredients as they please.

Cut off both ends of your shallot, and then peel off the dried layers. You will then be able to slice the shallot into many slices, which can then be chopped into smaller pieces as shown in the picture.

Step 3: Begin Cooking Your Veggies!

Begin by heating olive oil in your soup pot. Once the olive oil has heated a bit (it should be shiny and fluid), dump in all of your veggies and mix them around. You should cook these at medium-high heat for 15-20 minutes until softened, stirring every 5 minutes or so.

Step 4: Shred and De-bone the Chicken

A perfect time to shred and de-bone the chicken is while the veggies are cooking. Simply pull the meat off of the bones and break it into medium size chunks as you go.

Step 5: Adding Flour and Broth

Once the veggies have softened, you'll notice that they take up much less space in your pot and have changed in appearance visually. If you aren't certain if you've cooked them long enough, try cutting one with your spoon. If it cuts easily, you're ready to move on to the next step.

First add half a cup of flour and stir it in well with the veggies. This will act as a thickener. Adding more flour will make it thicker, less will make it more soupy.

Next pour in 3-4 cans of chicken stock. 3 will result in a thick stew, 4 will result in a thinner soup. Be sure to stir well at this point to scrape all of the four into the mixture and mix well. 

Step 6: Adding Chicken, Rice, and Peas

Now that you've added flour and broth, you're ready for some of the final additions.

First add both the spice packet and the the rice to the pot. 

Next add the full bag of frozen peas.

Finally, add the de-boned and shredded cooked chicken.

Now cover your soup pot and let it cook for about 7 minutes, stirring occasionally to keep the rice from sticking to the bottom of the pot.

Step 7: Last Step!

Once your seven minutes is up, add the sour cream and stir well. Your soup is now done and ready to be enjoyed!

Step 8: Gather Ingredients for Homemade Artisan Bread

This recipe for artesian bread is very simple and you will be able to enjoy homemade bread in no time! Plan on about 15 minutes of time to make the dough, about 3.5 hours to rise, and 30 minutes to cook. If you'd like to serve bread with your soup, we recommend starting the bread about three and a half hours before the soup. 

1 tablespoon granulated yeast
1 tablespoon salt
4 1/3 cups flour
2 cups lukewarm water

1 large bowl
Measuring cups
Nonstick cooking spray
Baking pan
Large spoon

Step 9: Mix It All Up!

Add all of the dry ingredients (flour, yeast, and salt) to a big mixing bowl and mix together. Add the water and stir until all of the flour is mixed in. This should only take a couple of minutes.  

Step 10: Let It Rise!

The dough needs time to rise and almost double in size. It is important to cover the bowl with either plastic wrap or aluminum foil, so that no air gets let out of the bowl. The yeast you added to the bread will produce carbon dioxide in the dough and make it rise. This can take anywhere from 2-5 hours. I let mine go for about 3.5 hours. 

Step 11: Shape the Dough!

After about 3 hours of rising, the dough will be ready to be shaped for baking. Spray a baking pan with nonstick cooking spray. Divide the dough into two equal parts and roll each into a ball. Cut a tic-tac-toe board into each ball, so that the steam can be let out while it is in the oven, like the picture above. Dust the outside of each ball with a little flour. 

Step 12: Time to Bake!

Preheat the oven to 450° F. Once the oven is preheated place the baking pan with the dough on it in the oven for 30 minutes. 

Step 13: Time to Slice and Enjoy!

Once the bread has baked for 30 minutes remove it from the oven and place it on a cooling rack. The bread will then be ready to slice and eat with your soup! 

Step 14: Get Ingredients for Bomb Pop Drink

This is a quick and cheap recipe for a delicious Bomb Pop cocktail.  They take no time at all to make and everyone (21 and older) will love them.  Perfect for a hot summer day and will take you back to the days when you enjoyed the bomb pop popsicle.  Here you will learn how to make a delicious cocktail that all your friends will enjoy.

Total time for making the drink is very short: just a minute or two.

The ingredients for this recipe are cheap and can be found in any grocery or liquor store.  You will need:

-Cherry Vodca
-Blue Curacao
-Grenidine Syrup
-Smirnoff Ice
-Large Mug or Glass

I personally used UV Cherry for the vodca but any cherry flavored vodca will work.  All this only costs around $30 and will easily make over ten drinks.  If more drinks are needed buy more Smirnoff Ice.  I have also heard of another recipe for this that substitutes UV Blue for the Blue Curacao so that is also an option.

Step 15: Add the Smirnoff Ice

First pour around half to 3/4 of a bottle of Smirnoff Ice into your mug.  Make sure to have enough in the glass so it will cover the shotglass. If there is not enough int he mug the drink will not mix properly.

Step 16: Drizzle the Grenidine

Drizzle the grenadine over the Smirnoff Ice in the mug.  Continue adding the grenadine until there is a red layer at the bottom of the mug.  Be careful not to add too much or the cocktail will turn out very sweet.

Step 17: Add Cherry Vodca and Blue Curacao

Now fill the shot-glass 1/2 to 3/4 full with your cherry vodka.  I found closer to 3/4 was a bit better since the Blue Curacao is very strong tasting.

Next fill the shot-glass the rest of the way up with the Blue Curacao.  The mixture will turn a dark blue or almost purple color.

Step 18: Drop in the Shotglass and Enjoy!

Finally, drop the shot-glass into the mug.  The drink will be dark blue on top, white in the middle, and red on the bottom.  This does not last long and the colors will soon start to mix together.  This beverage tastes great when consumed at any speed, so consume at your own pace.  

Step 19: Prepare Your Ingredients

Shortcake and waffles are two of the most delicious food items on the planet. It would only make sense to combine the two into one amazing dessert. This dish is very easy to make and is delicious. It's also quite quick to make, making it perfect for a fresh after dinner dessert. This desert typically takes only 5-15 minutes to complete.

The ingredients you will need to make the best strawberry shortcake waffles are as follows:

2 1/2 cups of Bisquick
1/4 cup of sugar
1/2 cup of milk
3 tablespoons of butter or margarine, melted
1 tsp of vanilla extract
1 egg
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
2 tablespoons of sugar
As many strawberries as you like
As much whipped cream as you like

You may also like to collect:
A large mixing bowl
A smaller mixing bowl
A whisk
measuring cups/spoons
A waffle iron

Step 20: The Beggining of the End

Once your supplies are gathered you will want to begin mixing the batter.

Empty the Bisquick, milk, vegetable oil, egg, butter, vanilla extract and the 1/4 cup of sugar into the large mixing bowl and beat until smooth. (Don't worry about small lumps in your batter)

Step 21: Cook It!

Once your batter is prepared, grease the pan with cooking spray or other non stick substance. Next pour approximately a cup of the freshly mixed shortcake batter into the waffle iron for 2-3 minutes.
(NOTE: amount of batter and times may vary on different waffle irons)

While this is cooking, mix the strawberries and 1/4 cup of sugar in a small bowl and set aside.

Remove your fresh shortcake waffle from the waffle iron and put as much whipped cream and sweetened strawberries on as you'd like!