Thursday, March 25, 2010

Buffalo Chicken Macaroni and Cheese

I got this recipe out of the Food Network magazine. I actually haven't eaten it yet since I just made it this morning for us to eat for dinner tonight but I am posting it for those of you that have asked for it. This evening, I will sit down and post a comment about how yummy it is because I can already tell it will be. Let me say one thing about an ingredient in this mac and cheese...PANKO crumbs! I use panko crumbs on just about every casserole that I make. I love them! If you haven't tried them, then this is the time. Don't just settle for regular bread crumbs...go for the panko. You can get them fairly cheap at Wal-mart.

7 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus more for the dish
Kosher salt
1 pound elbow macaroni (I use cavatappi or conchigilie)
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. It depends on what kind of noodles you are using. I usually cook them 2-3 minutes under what the bag says to cook them for them to be al dente. They will continue to cook in the oven in the sauce. You want them to still have a bite to them. 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.


Jessi Hacker said...

oh wow, I'm definitely making this this weekend! It sounds delicious! I know my kids will love it!

Jessi Hacker said...

I made this on Friday and the kids loved it, a little spicy for the small ones, but I can remedy that next time. Also sent some to a neighbor and the Fees and all LOVED IT! Thanks so much!

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