Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Buffalo Chicken Tacos

We're 2 for 2 this week folks. Another one that's hitting the regular rotation list. I spotted these on Foodgawker thanks to Mrs. Regueiro's Plate. I modified it just slightly, but I'll note what I did differently below in purple. Both Carl and I loved these, and it was a quick process. This is a great weeknight dinner!

  • 1 pound chicken breasts, skinless, boneless, cut into 1 inch pieces
  • ⅓ cup flour
  • 3 tablespoon cornstarch
  • ⅛ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • ⅓ cup buffalo wing sauce (Frank’s Buffalo Wing) , plus extra for garnishment
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • 10 6-inch yellow corn tortillas
  • Shredded butter Lettuce
  • Diced onions mixed with cilantro- 1 small onion with about 2 Tbsp of chopped cilantro
  • Avocado slices- I omitted
  • Ranch dressing
  • Green onions, sliced thinly
  • Blue Cheese Crumbles- how do you not have blue cheese with buffalo?? You don't! :)


Heat a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat.

In a large bowl, combine cornstarch, flour, cayenne, and garlic powder. Season the chicken pieces with pepper, then dredge in the flour mixture.

Add 1 tablespoon of olive oil to the Dutch oven and once it gets hot, add chicken and cook on both sides – about 3 to 4 minutes per side. Once the chicken is done, set it aside in a bowl and toss with ⅓ cup buffalo wing sauce.

Use the skillet from the chicken and fry up the tortillas on medium for about 10 seconds a side.

Assemble 10 tacos, dividing the toppings evenly among each taco.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Chopped Autumn Salad

You know when you find a recipe, and you think "Oh my goodness, I'm making this every night!"? Yeah, that happened tonight. I won't actually be making it every night, but it most certainly will be making it's way into our regular rotation.

Little story before we get to the recipe though, you can skip it if you don't like reading. I don't mind. Something really weird happened with this recipe/website. When I meal planned on Friday, it included chicken. But today, when I went to make it, gasp, no chicken. My dinner went from a main dish to a side dish, poof! :/ Oops. But no fear! I just sauteed a chicken breast seasoned with salt, pepper and garlic, sliced it and laid it on top. We'll call that a main course. Delish! (I'm still trying to figure out how I thought there was chicken in this salad...)

*6 to 8 cups chopped romaine lettuce
*2 medium pears, chopped
*1 cup dried cranberries
*1 cup chopped pecans
*8 slices thick-cut bacon, crisp-cooked and crumbled
*4 to 6 oz. feta cheese, crumbled
*Poppy seed Salad Dressing (I like T. Marzetti)
*Balsamic Vinaigrette (I like Newman's Own Light Balsamic Vinaigrette)

*On a large platter, combine the lettuce, pears, cranberries, pecans, bacon and feta cheese. Drizzle generously with poppy seed dressing, followed by some of the balsamic vinaigrette. (I would estimate that I used about a cup of dressing: 70 percent poppy seed dressing and 30 percent balsamic vinaigrette) If you prefer your salad to have more dressing, feel free to experiment with the combination.

*I did not edit any of the recipe write up from the original source, however, I agree with all that she said. The only difference was that I only needed about 3/4 cup of dressing- 1/4 balsamic and 1/2 poppy seed. I also swapped dried cherries and walnuts in, just because that's what we usually use and had on hand. The chicken was most certainly a welcome addition, but it's delicious either way. I used 8 cups of romaine, and there was enough for 4 entree sized salads.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Makeshift Chicago Dogs

WARNING: This hot dog is an imposter! It is NOT a true Chicago Dog. You've been warned.

I love, love, loooooooooooooove Chicago Hot Dogs. The ingredients seem so strange together, but something about them just works. Delicious. Problem is, some of the ingredients are hard to come by, especially outside of Chicago. I made what I had work. You can try it too. :)

  • Turkey Dog - It's supposed to be all beef :/
  • Tomato, sliced
  • Pickle Spear
  • Pepperocini Pepper, sliced in half- these are supposed to be the very hard to attain sport peppers
  • Onions, chopped
  • Ground celery mixed with Kosher Salt - supposed to be celery salt
  • Poppyseed Bun
  • Mustard

Just assemble the dog as shown above. One thing to note is that poppyseed buns can be hard to come by. I just sprinkled some seeds on a plate, brushed the buns with some melted butter and dipped the buns to coat. Worked alright in my opinion!

This is no true Chicago dog, but it definitely works in a pinch when the craving is too much to fight!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Buffalo Chicken Macaroni & Cheese

I love all things buffalo. It's a delicious flavor. My good friend, Lindsay, sent me this recipe and said I simply must try it. So I did, because I always follow directions. Did we love it? Eh. Was it tasty, absolutely. I think it was a little more rich than I expected. I was hoping for more spice. It was then that Lindsay told me she had doubled the Frank's. Ah....that would definitely help! So, without trying it that way, I hesitantly suggest you double the Frank's.

*Little tip, if you want a quick way to shred chicken, the food processor works in a pinch. Just be cautious with it so you don't puree the chicken. A few quick pulses is all it needs.


  • 7 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus more for the dish
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 pound elbow macaroni
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 2 stalks celery, finely chopped
  • 3 cups shredded rotisserie chicken
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3/4 cup hot sauce (preferably Frank's)
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons dry mustard
  • 2 1/2 cups half-and-half
  • 1 pound yellow sharp cheddar cheese, cut into 1-inch cubes (about 3 1/2 cups)
  • 8 ounces pepper jack cheese, shredded (about 2 cups)
  • 2/3 cup sour cream
  • 1 cup panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
  • 1/2 cup crumbled blue cheese
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and butter a 9-by-13-inch baking dish. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil; add the pasta and cook until al dente, about 7 minutes. Drain.

Meanwhile, melt 3 tablespoons butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and celery and cook until soft, about 5 minutes. Stir in the chicken and garlic and cook 2 minutes, then add 1/2 cup hot sauce and simmer until slightly thickened, about 1 more minute.

Melt 2 tablespoons butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Stir in the flour and mustard with a wooden spoon until smooth. Whisk in the half-and-half, then add the remaining 1/4 cup hot sauce and stir until thick, about 2 minutes. Whisk in the cheddar and pepper jack cheeses, then whisk in the sour cream until smooth.

Spread half of the macaroni in the prepared baking dish, then top with the chicken mixture and the remaining macaroni. Pour the cheese sauce evenly on top.

Put the remaining 2 tablespoons butter in a medium microwave-safe bowl and microwave until melted. Stir in the panko, blue cheese and parsley. Sprinkle over the macaroni and bake until bubbly, 30 to 40 minutes. Let rest 10 minutes before serving.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Tomato Sandwiches with Basil Mayonnaise

Carl wanted a tomato sandwich today.  I had no tomatoes, but we were about to leave for the Farmer's Market.  Sounded like a win to me.  I bought some heirloom tomatoes since mine are not cooperating.  Then he took it up a notch and asked if I could make some sort of basil mayonnaise.  Sure!  Why not?  Ina had a perfectly acceptable sounding one, and I had all the ingredients, including basil from the garden, so I got to work. 

Uh, yum!!!!  We'll be using a lot of this, and if I can figure out how to freeze it, I will.  Otherwise, I'll just freeze my basil and use it all year long!  Too bad heirloom tomatoes aren't in season all year long.  That would rock.  I just used some English Toasting Bread I had bought at the market last week.  Carl had two sandwiches...that should tell you something.


  • 1 cup good mayonnaise
  • 10 to 15 basil leaves, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon good olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 2 slices country loaf bread
  • 1 heirloom or Israeli tomato, sliced


Whisk together the mayonnaise, basil, salt, pepper, lemon juice, olive oil and garlic. Spread the mayonnaise mixture on the top of 2 slices of bread. Place the sliced tomato on top of one
bread slice. Place the remaining slice of bread, mayonnaise side down, on top of the tomato. Cut the sandwich in half and serve.
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