Monday, October 27, 2014

Buffalo Blasts ®

         In this house, game day is synonymous with guilty fried foods easy enough to eat with your hands while lounging on the couch.  We here are Rutgers fans and so when they became part of the Big 10 this year, that meant more TV coverage…….aka: more game days to get our grub on! Unfortunately though, their games haven’t been as successful as my frying has been….. Oh well, at least something is working out. J

            Here is a recent recipe I used for some pregame appetizers. I halved the original recipe since it was just for the two of us. I think we could have downed the entire full quantity though. It is funny how when things are fried and 2-biters, you go through 7-10 of them in one commercial break. Maybe we could have slowed down or better yet, maybe I should have made the original amount. Either way, they were delicious. Matt enjoyed them with an extra side of hot sauce while I kept a limit on the heat by eating them as is. Again, with the mere crumbs left before kickoff, you could tell they were a hit.

            I left directions on the bottom of the recipe for baking this recipe. I actually did bake the first few of these treats before frying the rest. Results: baking was pretty tasty, but frying was impossible to beat. With the baking, you need additional hot sauce to dip in or even to glaze on top as they get a bit dry.  I’d recommend you fry. With the itsy size of these things, your hips won’t know the difference, I promise! ;)


Buffalo Blast ®- Copycat Recipe
Adapted from: Our Italian Kitchen
Originally adapted from: Restaurant Copycat Recipes
Servings: 12 Blasts (serving for 1! – lol) 

OBJ: TCW be able to replicate a restaurant favorite while also providing a fried treat for game day fun

2 chicken breast, cooked (I used leftover over white meat from large Oven Roaster)
¼ C hot sauce
2 cloves garlic minced
4 ounces cream cheese, softened
S & P: salt and pepper, to your liking
½ package won-ton wrappers
Vegetable or Canola Oil, for frying

1. Shred chicken well
2.  In a medium to large bowl, mix hot sauce, cream cheese, garlic and S & P
3. Add the shredded chicken and combine
4. Place a heaping TBS of chicken mixture on corner of wrapper. Water the edges and fold over, press along edges to seal. Repeat with remaining chicken mixture and wrappers
5. Pour oil in a large pot, fill ½ way. Heat oil over medium-high flame, heat enough so that when you stick the back of wooden spoon to bottom of pan, bubbles rise up. Or with a thermometer, you can check oil to make sure it is 350 degrees
6. Fry about 5-6 Blasts at one time, for about 1-2 minutes on each side, until golden browned
7. Remove from oil and place on wire rack, sprinkle with salt immediately. Serve alongside additional hot sauce or blue cheese


*** Alternately, you can preheat oven to 425 degrees and bake blasts on a foil-lined baking sheet for about 15-20 minutes. Bake until golden brown, salt and serve with same dipping sauces. They are pretty good this way, not going to trick you into believing they are fried though! ***




Monday, October 6, 2014

Slow Cooker Honey Garlic Chicken

        BBrrrr, the weather is definitely turning around these parts. The mornings have a distinct chill and the leaves are starting to pile. Although I am a summer gal through and through, I do love the start of fall….all the colors, cozy wrap-around sweaters and new boots to strut around in. However, all this autumn excitement lasts, oh, until about mid November when the car is too flipping cold to get into in the morning, I realize I no longer have tan lines, and I have to drive in the dark home from work…yyuuuckkkk….how many months until Memorial Day!??!

            Okay, I got too ahead of myself and began to get winter cranky, sorry…So where I was going with this..I am writing this post to get to the point that when the weather turns cold, not much can make you smile more than a hearty and steaming meal. A dinner that warms you from the inside out is one that I crave from now until about April. Now I know that not every dinner can be quintessentially winter-ific, but I love when I can find easy meals that come pretty darn close.

            As in this one….. Hearty, steamy, and way-filling, it will have you hardly missing those 95 degree days. The recipe comes together in a snap and as a bonus makes your house smell quite nice. I served it over rice but I bet rice noodles would be fantastic too. Either way, I know you’ll enjoy it…..

Slow Cooker Honey Garlic Chicken
Serves: 4-6

OBJ: TCW be able to add a bit of pizzazz into the weeknight dinners

½ C soy sauce
½ C ketchup
1/3 C honey
2 cloves garlic, minced,
1 teaspoon dried basil
2 tsp siracha
½ C chopped green onion
2 tsp canola oil
Fresh ground pepper (to taste)
5 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
1 C diced carrot
1 C cleaned and roughly chopped string beans
Cornstarch and water

1. Whisk all ingredients except chicken, carrots, string beans, cornstarch and water
2. Place chicken in slow cooker, pour mixture on top
3. Cook on low 4 ½ hours
4. Add carrots and string beans to slow cooker, cook for additional 30-45 minutes
4. Remove chicken from slow cooker, make sure it is done (it should be but chicken sizes vary so much), shred it
5.  Leave slow cooker on low and whisk together 2 tablespoon cornstarch and 2 tablespoon of water. Add “slurry” to mixture left in slow cooker and stir. Add chicken back into slow cooker and let everything heat and thicken through- about 5 minutes
6. Serve over rice, sprinkle with sesame seeds, enjoy