Thursday, June 14, 2012

Buffalo Chicken Mac N' Cheese Bites

This is a perfect example of why America has an obesity problem. We reinvent dishes like macaroni and cheese to make them more tantalizing, irresistible and heart-stopping over and over. Fried oreos, bacon sundaes, chocolate covered corndogs, and now - buffalo chicken mac n' cheese. This is terrible. This is wonderful.

We had a Finger Food Challenge in my office last week, so I wanted to make something cheesy but easily portable. I ran out to buy a mini cupcake tin, which I now need to find a hundred other recipes for because they make everything bite-sized and adorable! My love of sliders and miniature food items made these mac n' cheese bites a no-brainer. My coworkers made two different buffalo chicken dips (3 TIMES the buffalo chicken!!!), bruschetta on toast, and two potato samplers with smoked salmon and dill sauce.

The food
Contestants with their prizes
Needless to say, we were all winners.

Buffalo Chicken Mac N Cheese Bites
Makes: 36 bites  Prep: 20 minutes  Total: 30 minutes

1/2 lb elbow macaroni
3 tbs butter
2 tbs flour
1 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella
1/2 cup crumbly blue
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper3/4 cup milk
2 eggs yolks
1/2 cup buffalo wing sauce
1 tbs hot sauce
2 cups chicken, cooked and shredded
1/4 cup bread crumbs

Cook macaroni al dente and set aside.
In a large pot, melt the butter on low heat and add flour. Add mozzarella and crumbly blue cheese, and stir until completely melted. Pour in salt, pepper and milk and heat on high for 3-4 minutes until the mix is fully incorporated. Remove from heat and mix in egg yolks.
In a separate bowl, combine shredded chicken, hot sauce and buffalo wing sauce. Mix well, then transfer into mac n cheese pot. Toss mac n cheese with chicken and spoon into lightly greased mini cupcake tins, pressing down to fill the tins completely. Sprinkle with bread crumbs and bake for 10 minutes. Remove and let cool for 10 minutes before serving.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Curry Chicken Soup with Sweet Potato and Coconut

I've taken a brief hiatus from blogging for a bit in lieu of doing lots of fun traveling, but I plan to come back with a vengeance! I only have a few weeks left in New Jersey before finishing my internship at Johnson & Johnson and moving back to Boston for summer classes. It's very bittersweet, but I want to make the most of my last days and am looking forward to being back with all my Boston friends. In the past few weeks, I've gone away to Syracuse, Boston, Chicago, Atlantic City, and am heading to Cleveland this weekend to visit Dylan one last time. Believe it or not I've still done some yummy cooking but haven't had the time to capture it all - which I'm very mad at myself for. Time to get back on the horse!

This soup reminds me of my mom because she loves Indian food and it's comprised of all her favorite things. I made it right before going home for Mother's Day and promised my mom I would give her the recipe. A lot of people don't love curry, but if you are a fan then you'll love this soup. The sweet potato and coconut subdue the curry powder and all the ingredients create a delicious blend of Indian flavors. With my love of sweet potato, I was just happy to think of a recipe that allowed me to eat more of them! Hope you enjoy and look for more recipes to come very soon. :)

Curry Chicken Soup with Sweet Potato and Coconut
Serves: 6   Prep: 1 hour  Total: 2 hours

2 sweet potatoes
4 cups chicken stock
1 cup coconut milk
1 lb chicken breast tenderloins
1 tbs fresh ginger
2 cloves fresh garlic
1 tsp curry powder
3/4 cup chopped yellow onion
Salt and pepper
Toasted coconut for garnish

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In two separate dishes bake the sweet potatoes for 45 minutes, then the chicken breast tenderloins for 30 minutes. When the sweet potato is done, scoop out the insides and set aside.
In a large pot, combine a little oil, chopped onion, garlic, ginger, curry powder, salt and pepper. Cook at medium heat until the onions have softened, approximately 3-5 minutes. Add the sweet potato and chicken stock, and bring to a boil and reduce by half. Bring to a simmer and add coconut milk and chopped chicken. Heat for another few minutes, then top with toasted coconut to serve.
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