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During the month of April, ARWB is highlighting one of our long-term supporters, Petit Jean Meats.  Thanks PJM for all you do for us. Follow them on Twitter, InstagramFacebook.

Growing up in Arkansas, we were always excited when we knew Petit Jean meats were  being served.  Petit Jean really is synonymous with Arkansas, my memories are almost as thick as shelling purple hull peas with my family on our front porch.  Whenever my mom would bake a Petit Jean ham, we would be so excited to eat on it for days.  Mother would serve some leftover for sandwiches, but most of the leftovers were used to serve up some of our favorite meals.

I have followed in her footsteps in as many ways as possible and today, make many of those same meals.  One of my family’s favorites is when I use leftover ham slices to stuff chicken breasts, you can even add some cheese to make it is somewhat like a chicken cordon bleu.  It is really simple and even more so as I have found my family prefers it without breading. 

You really only need a few simple ingredients to make a delicious main course your family will be asking for again and again.

petit jean ham stuffed chicken breast recipe


Ham Stuffed Chicken Breasts
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  1. 4-5 chicken breasts or cutlets
  2. 4-5 Petit Jean ham slices
  3. 4-5 cheese slices (Swiss or another sharp cheese)
  4. 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  5. 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  6. 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
  7. 1/4 teaspoon and pepper
  8. 1-2 tablespoon olive oil
  1. Begin by preheating your oven to 350 degrees.
  2. If you are using full chicken breasts, cut the thickest part of the chicken breast in half. If it is still over an inch thick, sandwich it between two pieces of parchment paper and use a meat tenderizer to help flatten it a bit.
  3. Next layer a piece of ham followed by a slice of cheese.
  4. Starting at one end, begin to tightly roll the chicken in. Once you have rolled it, you can secure it with baking twine or toothpicks.
  5. Place into a baking dish. Drizzle with olive oil and then desired spices.
  6. Depending on the thickness of your chicken breast, bake 35-40 minutes or until 160 degrees internally. The cheese should be melted and dripping.
Arkansas Women Bloggers

It really is such a simple dish to prepare and yet the taste is amazing!  My family loves it to be served with homemade macaroni and cheese, baked beans and vegetable sticks.  The hardest part might indeed be deciding what to serve alongside these delicious stuffed chicken breasts!

You can also make more than what you need and freeze them for later.  In this case I would suggest not using toothpicks or removing them once you flash freeze the chicken breasts.  To freeze, after you have added your spices, place in a single layer on a flat sheet into the freezer.  After 30-45 minutes, remove from the freezer and gently place in a freezer bag.  This should allow you to remove just the amount you wish to prepare next time.  If frozen, bake an additional 15-20 minutes.

amanda fiveashGetting to Know Your ARWB Foodies

Amanda Fiveash
Our Homemade Life

What food reminds you of childhood?

There are oh, so many!
Cheese dip-my Mother’s favorite!
Strawberries-we use to pick them and eat more than made it into our baskets.
Purple hull peas-takes me back to sitting on the front porch and shelling them until my fingers were purple. Good times, great food and  cherished memories are brought back when I smell them cooking.

What is your favorite international cuisine?
Mexican food has always been one of my favorite types of cuisine. It is amazing to me that they can use such simple ingredients (beans and rice) in so many dishes to make them delicious and flavorful.

What is always in your refrigerator at home?
Almond milk, goat cheese, carrots and celery

What is your most used cookbook?
It is one my mother gave me when I got married; it has a few of her notes added in the pages.

What is your favorite kitchen gadget?
Hard one…there are so many but I have to say I have a deep love for my slow cooker. It saves me on so many days!

Do you have a favorite food indulgence?  
Chocolate! Anything with chocolate in it :)

What is your go-to ingredient that you use time and time again?
Coconut oil, it is amazing!

What is your favorite food meal to cook at home?
Pasta. My kids are always asking for spaghetti and meatballs.

What is a cooking tip that you would like to share with beginning cooks?
.Don’t be afraid to try. You will never know if it will be something amazing if you don’t attempt it. And it doesn’t always look pretty, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t absolutely delicious!

When you’re not cooking, what are your favorite pastimes?
I love to craft. My children and I are excellent creative mess makers.

What else would you like us to know about you?

While I am not a chef by any means, I love to take simple natural ingredients to feed my family wholesome meals. As a homeschooling family, we spend a lot of time in the kitchen and love to bake even more than we love to cook. My door is always open, but you are likely to find a pile of dishes in the sink. I firmly live by, “Please excuse my messes, we are busy making memories.”

Amanda was born in Arkansas and although lived in several other states, returned home to put down roots before starting her own family in Northern Arkansas.  Her blog, Our Homemade Life is a creative outlet to share her adventures in motherhood from making messes with crafts and in the kitchen to homeschooling and their love of family travel

Connect with  Amanda:
: Our Homemade Life
Instagram: @ourhomemadelife



Productive Life

April 23, 2015

by Miranda Holman

This post is dedicated to my father, James Scott Hutchins

Long Garden Pic

How do you define a Productive Life?

Is it achieving all the goals you set for yourself?

Or is it just simply getting through another day?

Productive Life can be used to describe something that produces a positive result.

So maybe it is achieving all your goals you set or surviving another day at work or school, but to me it has a bigger meaning.

I don’t want to just live with an end in mind, I want to  Embrace the Productive Life I  have.

I can write this post and be productive, but is it going to have a positive effect on my life?

I have to chose whether what I do is going to affect me in a bigger way in order for me to have a Productive Life.

My father, has worked his fingers to the bone since he was a small boy.  When most elementary aged students are enjoying playing baseball and swimming with their friends, my father was traveling back and forth to Missouri to work in the cotton fields to help supply the needs of his family.

Black and WHite Shovel Shot


When my father was in 6th grade, he had to quit school to work in the fields full time.  After that, he never continued to slow down.

After meeting and marrying my mother at the age of 20, my father worked hard to support his bride along with the four children that would come into his life through the next fifteen years.

He worked to supply a home for his family, as well as food, and extras that we thought we needed.

My father kept a garden for fresh food, along with chickens for fresh eggs.  He hunted deer, squirrel and rabbits to supply fresh meat along with fishing when the weather was good.

When he wasn’t working at his job, he was working on our property, adding rooms to our house to provide for our growing family, as well as remodeling to make it more livable for a large family.

My father retired at the age of sixty to care for my mother who was doing of cancer.  After she passed he went right back to working the land, the same way he had all his life.

Today at the age of seventy-four, my father still works everyday to make the most out of this one life that God has given him.

colored pic of daddy in garden


He works his garden, he takes care of his chickens and he helps every person who needs help in their life.

Chicken Pic


I look at my life and I realize that the things I have chosen so far as not been very productive as far as in the long run.

Then I look at my father’s life and I realize that he has Embraced the Productive Life.

He has taken every moment that God has allowed him to have and make sure that the moments ended with a positive side.  He was never afraid of hard work, risks, or bad situations.  He faced them head on and continued living in a productive way without ever slowing down.

My father has every right to look at his life and be proud of the life he lived.

Black and White pic of daddy

Are you Embracing a Productive Life?

If you answered no, then you still have time to Refresh and Renew the life you were given.

Black and White Tiller


miranda holemanMiranda, is a Crunchy, Country Mama giving her look on a Homemade Life of Homeschool, Good Eats, (Mis) Adventures, and Living Grace-Filled Everyday@GraceandGravy with a side of life! Miranda has been married to her sweet husby for 16 years and a homeschool mama to 2 kiddos at home. She loves her four-legged, fur babies and they make her life complete. Miranda is passionate about Guatemala Missions, Early Farmhouse Life/Decor, and learning to be a Self-Sufficient Homesteader!

You can also find GraceandGravy on FacebookPinterestInstagram and Twitter!

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By Whitney B of Whitbits Indian Kitchen

Almond Blossoms


WhitneyHeadshot Whitney loves cooking, especially Indian food. Her blog contains mostly Indian recipes, but she cooks everything. She usually cooks what she craves, but is often spontaneous. Born and raised in Alabama, she attended the University of Alabama and has a passion for Alabama football. She also loves the San Francisco Giants.


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