Posts tagged ‘chicken’

King Ranch Mac and Cheese

King Ranch Mac and Cheese

King Ranch Mac and Cheese

WARNING: This recipe is a DIET BUSTER!! If you are on a diet and don’t have planned cheat days (who doesn’t plan cheat days for their diet?), then go ahead and close this page and go about your normal daily activities. But if you are not on a diet, or you are a big fan of King Ranch Chicken and are obsessed with mac and cheese, then by all means keep reading.

Mixin everything into a cast iron skillet

Mixin’ everything into a cast iron skillet

     When I first spotted this recipe in Mrs. G’s Southern Living back in January, I knew I was going to make it, it was just a matter of when. Mrs. G loves mac and cheese, have I mentioned that before? Well, she does and she can whip up some pretty mean ones and her King Ranch Chicken is out of this world (although you can’t tell from those horrible pics I took. Hey, I was just getting started, cut me some slack). What a fantastic idea to combine the two of them. This past Sunday, I grilled up a bunch of chicken thighs (lately, I’ve been grilling up extra food on Sundays for lunches and casseroles and what not during the week) with no real plans of what I was going to do with them. Mrs G has a bunch of casseroles that use chicken, but I wanted something new. Something different. That’s when I remembered this recipe that I believe graced the cover of Southern Living back in January 2013.

King Ranch Mac and Cheese

(Slightly modified from original Southern Living version, serves 6)

Ingredients

  • 1/2 of a 16-oz. package of elbow macaroni
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 small yellow onion, diced
  • 1/2 orange bell pepper, diced (the recipe originally called for 1 green bell, but you know how I feel about those)
  • 1 (10-oz.) can Ro*Tel (diced tomatoes and green chiles)
  • 8 oz Velveeta (or more if you really like cheese), cubed
  • 3 cups chopped cooked chicken (leftover BBQ chicken if ya got it ;) )
  • 1 (10 3/4-oz.) can cream of chicken soup
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 1/2 cups (6 oz.) shredded Mexican Four Cheese Blend
The original recipe called for shredded cheddar cheese. I figured a Mexican Four Blend Cheese would work better. Ready for the oven.

The original recipe called for shredded cheddar cheese. I figured a Mexican Four Blend Cheese would work better. We’re ready for the oven.

Preparation

  1. Preheat oven to 350°.
  2. Bring a pot of salted water to a boil and cook the pasta until al dente. Do NOT follow the directions on the package or you will end up with soggy, overcooked macaroni after it spends 25-30 minutes additional cook time in the oven. The directions on my box said to cook it for 8-10 minutes, we opted for 6 and it came out perfect.
  3. Meanwhile, melt butter in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add onion and bell pepper, and sauté 5 minutes or until tender. Stir in tomatoes and green chiles and Velveeta; cook, stirring constantly until cheese melts. Stir in chicken, next 4 ingredients, and hot cooked pasta until blended. Spoon mixture into a lightly greased 10-inch cast-iron skillet or 11- x 7-inch baking dish; sprinkle with Mexican cheese blend. (The directions said a 10-inch CI skillet, but to us it looked like it wasn’t going to fit, so we used a slightly larger one. I’m not sure on the size as I forgot to measure. maybe 12″?)
  4. Bake at 350° for 25 to 30 minutes or until bubbly.
  5. Allow mac and cheese to cool for 5-10 minutes before serving.
After cooking in the oven approximately 25 minutes.

Cooling after cooking in the oven approximately 25 minutes.

How do you like to serve your macaroni and cheese? In a bowl or on a plate?

Mrs. G likes to eat hers out of a bowl.

Mrs. G likes to eat hers out of a bowl.

Me? I’m not real picky. I don’t figure there’s really a right or wrong answer as long as you give me a big ole helping.

I had mine on a plate

Mrs. G served mine up on a plate.

     What can I say? This dish was everything I hoped it would be. Ooey, gooey cheesy just like mac and cheese should be, but with the flavors of a good King Ranch Chicken. Just a touch of heat from the Ro*Tel and chili powder. Not enough to make your nose run or tongue burn, but enough to remind you that this is no ordinary mac and cheese. A slight earthiness flavor from the cumin combined with the chili powder gave it a Tex-Mex/Southwestern flavor. At first, it was a little weird. Missing was the flavor and texture of the corn tortillas that go into a King Ranch Chicken, to be replaced by elbow macaroni. That’s not a bad thing, it’s just different.

We probably ate more than we should have, it was that good.

We probably ate more than we should have, it was that good.

     If you are going to blow your diet, or you plan your cheat days, this dish it totally worth it, IMHO. Not something we’re going to make on a regular basis for health reasons, but next time we have left over chicken, I’m seriously going to consider this recipe when deciding what to do with it.

What I Would Do Differently

Not a damn thing. Winner, winner, mac and cheese and chicken dinner. Honestly, not one thing would I do differently.

Sour Cream Chicken Enchiladas

Sour Cream Chicken Enchiladas

Sour Cream Chicken Enchiladas

     When we cook whole chickens on the BGE, we generally like to spatchcock them and we usually do two or more if we have the time. Its a pretty simple, fool proof method of cooking them that doesn’t require much attention of the cook. The reason we like to do two or more is to have leftovers for later in the week to toss in casseroles or other chicken dishes (or to vacuum seal and freeze later).  This past Sunday, the weather was beautiful and we didn’t have any prior engagements demanding our time, so we decided to enjoy the weather, let the dogs play in the yard and cooked up a few yardbirds.

One spatchcocked chicken cooked solely for casseroles or other dishes.

One spatchcocked chicken cooked solely for casseroles or other dishes.

     When we cooked up this bird, I had no idea what we were going to use it for. Still didn’t yesterday morning. Now, Mrs. G has an arsenal of casserole dishes that she can whip up on the spot, but I was looking for something a bit different from the ones she normally makes. And then it hit me, why not make it Tex-Mex? How about some sour cream enchiladas? So off to the internet I went to gather some ideas, comparing recipes and ingredients for inspiration until I could come up with my own.

Every good sauce begins with making a roux.

Every good sauce begins with making a roux.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups cooked chicken, shredded (if you don’t have grilled chicken on hand and don’t feel like cooking one, grocery store rotisserie chickens will work just fine)
  • 1 lb Monterrey Jack cheese, grated
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 12 corn tortillas (yes, I suppose you could use flour, but why would you for enchiladas?)
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 2 Tbsp flour
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 8 oz sour cream (1 cup)
  • 2 jalapeno peppers chopped ( for milder tastes, remove seeds and membrane, then chop)
  • 4 oz canned green chilies
  • green onions or cilantro for garnish
Soften the corn tortillas by frying them in oil for a few seconds

Soften the corn tortillas by frying them in oil for a few seconds

Directions

  1. Soften tortillas by frying them in hot oil for a few seconds, not too long, you don’t want them to get crispy. Drain on paper towels or a cooling rack.

    Filling the enchiladas

    Filling the enchiladas

  2. Once cool, fill tortillas with chicken, onions and cheese (use about half the cheese). Roll them up and place them in a large shallow pan.

    Your enchiladas should look a little something like this once you have finished rolling them

    Your enchiladas should look a little something like this once you have finished rolling them. Yeah, I know, I said 12 tortillas and there are 13 there, you got a problem with that? ;)

  3. Melt 1/4 cup of butter. Add flour and whisk until a light, blonde roux has formed. Slowly add in chicken stock while continuously whisking (you don’t want to break your roux). Cook over medium heat until thickened.
  4. Add sour cream and cook until hot, but do not boil.
  5. Add jalapeno peppers and green chilies and some extra Monterrey Jack cheese if you feel like it. We did and it really adds flavor to your sauce.
  6. Pour sauce over enchiladas and add more cheese (about 4 oz or more)

    Pour on the sauce and add a little extra cheese for good measure. Or a lot of cheese, I won't stop you.

    Pour on the sauce and add a little extra cheese for good measure. Or a lot of cheese, I won’t stop you.

  7. Cook indirectly on your BGE, cooker or smoker for about 25-30 minutes at 375F. If you are cooking in an oven, 350F for about 20 minutes.

    On the BGE, indirect at 375F (cook at 350 if using an oven)

    On the BGE, indirect at 375F (cook at 350 if using an oven)

  8. If your enchiladas haven’t “browned up” at the end of 30 minutes, pop them under the broiler for a few minutes. Watch carefully as they can burn pretty quickly.

    Finished, but something seems to be missing...

    Finished, but something seems to be missing…

  9. Top with green onions and/or cilantro.
Garnish!! Now it looks better!

Garnish!! Now it looks better!

     Green onions or cilantro work well for a garnish for this dish. We opted for green onions because somebody, meaning me, forgot to get cilantro while at the store. Whoops.

Ready to eat!

Ready to eat!

     Plated it up with a simple salad of iceberg lettuce, some cherry tomatoes and green onions and chipotle cheddar salad dressing for a cool, crisp contrast with a bite of heat to the creamy, cheesy enchiladas. For a relatively quick and easy meal, this one packed quite a bit of flavor. They had just a bit of smokieness from the grilled chicken and then cooking the enchiladas on the BGE. Creamy and cheesy goodness with just a hint of heat from the jalapenos. 

So good that I had to go back for one more! :)

So good that I had to go back for one more! :)

What I’d Do Differently

I opted to take out the seeds and veins on the jalapenos. That’s where the majority of the heat is stored and taking them out removes the heat but still gives you a nice flavor. I think next time I’ll leave them in as I wanted a bit more heat. Either that or get the Monterrey Jack cheese with jalapeno peppers instead of plain ole Monterrey Jack. Other than that, I’d leave it just the way it is.

 

Spicy Ranch Chicken Wings Updated 11/4/13

Spicy Ranch Chicken Wings

Spicy Ranch Chicken Wings

     I know what you are thinking…another wing recipe? What can I say? I love wings. And since my birthday was this past weekend, I decided I wanted to cook some wings. I was trying to come up with a new recipe and I remembered some spicy ranch wings that I got at a wing place called Pluckers. They were ok, but I figured I could find a better recipe that incorporated that ranch flavor into the wings. These came out nothing like Pluckers, BTW.

Calibrating my thermometer in boiling water.

Calibrating my thermometer in boiling water.

     Before I got started, I decided to calibrate the dome thermometer on my BGE. Lately, some of my cooks have been taking longer than usual. I started boiling some water and placed the thermometer in the pot. In the above picture, the water wasn’t even boiling and it was already reading over 300F. For those who don’t remember their science classes, water boils at 212F at sea level. My thermometer was reading about a 100 degrees too hot, that could explain quite a bit! If you are running a Tel-Tru thermometer (and possible some other ones), you will find a nut on the back of the thermometer. Using a wrench to turn that nut, you can adjust the needle so it reads 212F when placed in boiling water. Always a good idea to check your thermometers a couple of times a year.

Wings in a Zip-LOck bag with the marinade.

Wings in a Zip-LOck bag with the marinade.

Ingredients

  • 3 lbs chicken wings
  • 3/4 cup hot pepper sauce (we like to use Franks)
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
  • 3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1  envelope ranch dressing mix
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika

Directions:

  1. In a gallon-size resealable plastic bag, combine hot pepper sauce, melted butter and vinegar.
  2. Add chicken wings, seal bag and toss to coat evenly.
  3. Refrigerate for 4-8 hours.
  4. Set up your grill for an indirect cook at 400F. If using a BGE, set it up for a direct raised grate cook.
  5. Mix together the ranch dressing powder and paprika.

    Ranch dressing mix and paprika for the rub

    Ranch dressing mix and paprika for the rub

  6. Remove wigs from marinade and sprinkle liberally with dressing mix and paprika.
  7. Grill  for 35-40 minutes. Wings can be cooked higher than chicken breasts and I usually take them to 175-180. More of the fat renders out and they become crispier than if you pull at 165.
Raised grate on the Egg at 400F

Raised grate on the Egg at 400F

     The wings should take 35-40 minutes to cook, but keep an eye on them. You may want to flip and rotate them if you have hot spots on your grill to prevent them from burning and to ensure they cook evenly. If desired, add some wood chips to give them a hint of smoke flavor. We really like a touch of mesquite with our wings.

Done

Done

     The wings are done and separated into flats and drums. Is there a picky eater in your house that prefers one over the other? In our house, Mrs. G likes the drummettes and I prefer the flats, so it works out perfectly.

Plated up

Plated up

     Plated up (or should I say basketed up?) with some steak fries, celery and ranch dressing. This was a first for us. Although the marinade is pretty close to a classic Buffalo Wing Sauce, I’ve never marinated them in it before. Usually I just toss it on at once the wings are done. Not sure that it really added any extra flavor. I did get a nice twang from the ranch dressing powder that was sprinkled on before grilling. I really liked that added flavor to the wings and can see doing it again. Didn’t catch much, if any, flavor from the paprika, however. Nor was there much heat. For a “spicy” recipe, this one fell short of the mark. Overall, I’d say it was a very good recipe, the name was just misleading. Buffalo Ranch Chicken Wings would have been more accurate. Maybe I’ll throw in a bit of chipotle powder into the rub next time just to give it some heat and really make them Spicy Ranch Wings.

Update

     This past weekend, I attended the Plano Outlaw Eggfest. A decision that was made at the last minute. Not having much time to plan, I decided to cook these wings, but changed the recipe to address the lack of heat. In addition to the ingredients listed above, I added:

  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/8 tsp chipotle chile pepper
  • 1/8 tsp ancho chile powder
  • 1/8 tsp chile powder
  • 1/8 tsp of white pepper

     I really think it helped out quite a bit. It gave it more of a complex flavor, more depth and increased the heat, but not so much that your mouth was burning. I’d say it came out just right and people were asking me for the recipe all day so that says something.

 

Garlic Parmesan Chicken Wings

Garlic Parmesan Chicken Wings

Garlic Parmesan Chicken Wings

     Chicken Wings! I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again…they are my 5th food group. Mrs. G thinks I might be obsessed with them and she maybe right. Garlic Parmesan is one I’ve been staying away from. I’m never sure when I read recipes for them if the author means the grated parmesan in the green can or fresh parmesan. I’ve made them in the past using fresh and it wasn’t pretty. Thursday of last week, a guy by the name of LTAFlynEgg on the Egghead forum wrote a post about a bunch of different flavored wings he did, one of which was garlic parmesan. That inspired me to tackle them again and to get it right this time. Which I think know I did!

Wings going on the MINI Egg indirect at 400F. Often when I am cooking for myself, I go with the MINI. Quicker to light, quicker to get up to temperature and uses much less lump charcoal.

Wings going on the MINI Egg indirect at 400F. Often when I am cooking for myself, I go with the MINI. Quicker to light, quicker to get up to temperature and uses much less lump charcoal.

Ingredients

(For 16 whole wings or 32 flats and drummetes. )

     For the rub:

  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp dried rosemary
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp thyme
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder (this won’t add flavor, but will help you achieve crispy skin on the wings)

     For the sauce:

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup grate Parmesan & Romano Cheese (in the green can)
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • couple of turns of the pepper grinder
  • salt to taste
Done after 30 minutes

Done after 30 minutes

Instructions

  1. Set up your grill for an indirect cook and pre-heat to 400F.
  2. Combine the ingredients for the rub. If you have a spice grinder, grind them up to a powder.
  3. Dust the chicken wings liberally with the rub.
  4. Place the chicken on the grill (making sure not to be directly over flame or charcoal) and cook for about 15 minutes. Flip and cook for another 15 minutes. Chicken is cooked safely when it reaches 165F, but wings can (and should) be cooked a bit higher in order for the fat to render off and to allow the skin to crisp up. 175 and even 180 would be good. Cook until crispy.
  5. While the chicken is cooking, melt the butter in a small sauce pan. Add the remaining ingredients and allow to simmer for 5 minutes.
  6. When the chicken is done, remove to a large heat proof bowl. Pour the sauce over the chicken and toss to coat.
  7. Serve with celery and/or carrots and your favorite dipping sauce. (I actually thought there was no need for a sauce they were so good.)
Plated up and ready to dig in.

Plated up and ready to dig in.

Can you honestly look at that and tell me it doesn’t look good? 

Plated up and ready to dig in!

Just looking at that picture is making me crave these wings again.

     They say variety is the spice of life and who am I to argue? While I love a basket of messy, spicy Buffalo Wings, sometimes I don’t want spicy. These will definitely fit the bill in that case. Perfect crispy skin with the flavors of garlic and parmesan cheese bursting forth. I ate more wings this night than I normally do. So if you are wanting wings but not the spice, maybe you are hosting a party with a bunch of kids who won’t like spicy foods or you are just looking for something different to try, give these wings a shot. You can thank me later. ;)

 

Chicken Thighs with a Crabmeat Stuffing

Chicken Thighs with a Crabmeat Stuffing

Chicken Thighs with a Crabmeat Stuffing

     Wow!! It’s been almost a month since I’ve posted anything! I do believe that’s the longest I’ve ever gone and I’m sorry for that. We’ve been going through some trying stuff (close family and friends will know what I’m talking about) and cooking just hasn’t been much on my mind lately. Not that we haven’t been cooking, but its been stuff like burgers or fajitas or stuff that wasn’t really blog worthy. Or stuff we’ve already done here. Been doing quite a bit more cooking inside, more than is normal for us.  But we’re back!! And today we are bringing you these bundles of chicken with a crabmeat stuffing. And never fear…I’ve got about six cooks lined up that I am super excited about. So stay tuned and see what we’re cooking up.

     We’ve been trying to clear out the freezer a bit lately. I came across these chicken thighs and I didn’t want to just throw them on the Egg with a bit of rub or sauce. No…I wanted to do something else. We’ve all seen stuffed chicken breasts….why not thighs? Dark meat has more flavor than white meat and is less likely to dry out. Sounds like a winner to me, so I started looking around for recipes, found one I liked and modified it a bit to fit our tastes.

Applying the stuffing to the boneless chicken thighs.

Applying the stuffing to the boneless chicken thighs.

     Before we get started, if you can find boneless chicken thighs, do yourself a favor and buy them. Not that its hard to debone a thigh, it’s just a pain in the but. That’s what was in the freezer though, so that’s what I used. I’m keeping my eyes out for boneless from now on.

Ingredients

  • 6 boneless chicken thighs, skin on
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1/2 cup celery, diced fine
  • 1/2 cup onion, diced fine
  • 1 6oz can lump crabmeat, drained (if you can get fresh, go for it. Not kitchen tested as I couldn’t get any)
  • 2 tbsp white wine (we used Pinot Grigio as that was what Mrs. G was drinking)
  • 1/2 tsp poultry seasoning
  • 1/4 tsp fresh cracked black pepper
  • 2 cups bread cubes
  • your favorite bbq or chicken rub (We used Dizzy Pig’s Tsunami Spin, a rub with mid and far Eastern influences)
Layering the stuffing on is the easy part, wait till you get to rolling them up.

Layering the stuffing on is the easy part, wait till you get to rolling them up.

Directions

  1. Add the vegetable oil and butter to a large skillet and over medium heat.
  2. Add the celery and onion and sprinkle on a pinch of salt. Sautee until soft, about five minutes.
  3. Remove from heat and add poultry seasoning and pepper. Next, stir in crabmeat, bread cubes and wine. Allow to cool.
  4. Preheat your grill to 400F. If using an Egg or other ceramic cooker, set it up for a direct cook with raised grates. For other charcoal or gas grills, you want a 2 zone cooking set up with flame on one side and none on the other. (This will allow you a safe area to move chicken in case of flare ups.)
  5. Lay the chicken out skin side down and spread an even layer of the mixture over each one.
  6. Now the tricky part….roll the chicken up and secure with toothpicks. We didn’t get any pictures of this as we had nasty chicken stuff all over our hands and didn’t want tot get it on the camera. You understand, don’t you and forgive us? I knew you would.
  7. Once you’ve got them all rolled out, season the outside with your rub and place on the grill.
  8. Cook the chicken for about 20 minutes, turning every so often to ensure even cooking (I went about every 5 minutes)
  9. Cook until chicken hits about 165F. Sure, that’s high for chicken breasts, but the thighs can take that kind of heat without drying out.
Onto the Egg at 400F

Onto the Egg at 400F

     We’ve talked about wood and smoke before. Have you been paying attention? What kind of wood would pair well with chicken?

About 10 minutes in.

About 10 minutes in.

If you answered a light wood, possible a fruit wood such as apple or cherry, then you are correct! Give yourself 10 points. Not sure what you are going to do with them, but 10 points has to be better than none, right? Notice those two small pieces of chicken off to the side? Casualties of my poor deboning skills. I like to call them chef’s treats as I get to eat them while the chicken is cooking. ;)

Finished after 20 minutes.

Finished after 20 minutes.

Once the chicken is done, remove it from the grill and loosely cover with foil for about 5 minutes to rest. This gives you some time to make a salad or some other side dish.

Is your mouth watering yet?

Is your mouth watering yet?

     We kept it simple and just went with a wedge salad. We figured the bread crumbs in the stuffing already counted as carbs, so we didn’t need a potato or rice or couscous.

Dinner is served!!

Dinner is served!!

     The chicken turned out pretty good, if I do say so myself. Juicy, with a nice flavor from the rub and just the right amount of smoke. The first bite gave you that familiar stuffing taste with the bread and onions and celery and poultry seasoning, but then you noticed it was just a bit different from Thanksgiving stuffing. I’d really like to say that the crab meat stole the show, but in all honesty…it was kind of lost with all the other players. It didn’t jump out and you and say, “Hey!! There’s crab in here!!” Maybe fresh crab would give it that extra UMPH. I don’t know.

     I do know that it was fun writing a blog post again. Expect one again real soon. Like maybe tomorrow. Or Monday. And expect venison. :)

Sauerbraten Chicken Wings

Sauerbraten Chicken Wings

Sauerbraten Chicken Wings

     With Mrs. G off to Germany, I’m just imagining all the great food she must be eating. Schnitzel, spaetzel, bratwurst and other sausages, pig knuckle and pig shank (Hey, don’t knock it if you haven’t had it. It’s really good).  Tons of good food. Most of which I can’t/never tried to cook. Thinking about German food, my love of chicken wings and a conversation with a fellow blogger, Kristi of Necessary Indulgences, about said chicken wings, got me doing some research until I came upon Sauerbraten Chicken Wings. Not something I saw while I was in Germany. For all I know, not something they even make, but it sounded good to me. :)

    Sauerbraten literally translates to sour roast meat. While usually referring to beef, it can include venison, lamb, mutton or pork (and even horse in the old days). Normally, tougher cuts of meat are used. They are allowed to marinate for 3 to 10 days in order to tenderize the meat. Since chicken is not a touch cut of meat, we can reduce the amount of time it needs to marinate down to one day.  As far as I can tell, this recipe is pretty authentic minus the juniper berries which can be difficult to find.

Chicken Wings cooking on the Big Green Egg indirect at 400F

Chicken Wings cooking on the Big Green Egg indirect at 400F (before sprinkiling with salt and pepper)

Sauerbraten Chicken Wings (serves 4)

(I cut the recipe in half since I was just cooking for myself in case you were wondering why there isn’t 4 lbs of wings in these pictures)

Ingredients

  • 4 lbs chicken wings, tips removed
  • 3 cups water
  • 3/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 3/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 10 peppercorns
  • 6 whole cloves
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 2 medium onion, diced
  • 1 lemon, cut into eight wedges
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp butter
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp flour
  • 4 Tbsp crushed ginger snaps
Almost done

Almost done

Directions

  1. Combine water, red wine vinegar, apple cider vinegar, bay leaf, peppercorns, cloves, salt, onion, and lemon in saucepan. Bring to a boil, cover and simmer 10 minutes. Remove from heat and cool.
  2. Remove 1 cup marinade liquid (try not to get any solid pieces), cover, and reserve in refrigerator. Place wings in a Zip-Lock bag and pour remaining marinade over. Seal and refrigerate overnight.
  3. Set up grill for an indirect cook and pre-heat to 400 degrees F. Remove wings from marinade (discard marinade), shaking a bit to remove any excess liquid. Place wings on grill, sprinkle with coarse salt and fresh ground pepper, and cook  for about 30 to 40 minutes, turning once halfway through. Times may vary due to size of wings and different grills. Make sure to cook them to a minimum of 165.
  4. Towards the end of cooking, melt butter over medium heat in a saucepan. Add flour to butter, stirring until flour begins to brown (should be golden brown in color), about 3-4 minutes. Slowly add the reserved 1 cup marinade and stock, whisking until smooth and slightly thickened, about 2-3 minutes. Add ginger snaps, whisking until dissolved.
  5. When wings are cooked, remove from grill to a bowl or serving platter. Pour 1 cup of sauce over wings and toss. If desired, add remaining sauce (about 2/3 cup) or serve passed as dipping sauce with wings.
Finished and all sauced up

Finished and all sauced up

    If you like, you can go ahead and pretend I served up these sauerbraten wings with some authentic German sides like Kartoffelknoedel (potato dumplings), spaetzle (a type of egg noodle that is to die for), Rotkohl (red cabbage), boiled potatoes or potato pancakes and a nice, cold pint of German beer. I don’t mind. No need to admit I ate it with tater tots and a bourbon and Coke. 

Sauerbraten Chicken Wings ready to eat

Sauerbraten Chicken Wings ready to eat

     This was  quite an unusual twist from the normal wings. There was no heat involved. Instead, it had a nice mixture of sweet from the ginger snaps and sour and tang from the apple cider vinegar and red wine vinegar. Definitely an interesting change to what most have come to expect from wings. While not my favorite wing recipe, I’ll be making these again. Especially next fall when Oktoberfest rolls around.

The original recipe that I modified can be found HERE

Chicken Pot Pie Take II

Chicken Pot Pie

Chicken Pot Pie

     I’ve been meaning to do a chicken pot pie again for quite a while. We did one a long time ago (I just checked and turns out the last Chicken Pot Pie we did was on Jan 16, 2012, just one day shy of a year ago. What are the odds that we would randomly do one almost a year later? Really? I promise you that wasn’t planned.)

Sauteing onions and celery

Sauteing onions and celery

     I don’t know what I was thinking when I did that post. I didn’t have a recipe and I’m sure it wasn’t helpful to anybody. I thought about deleting it many times. I was kind of embarrassed I even did it. I was still new to blogging, and was a bit obsessed with writing posts and seeing how many people I could get to visit my blog every day.  These days I’m not so obsessed anymore…at least I don’t think. I no longer care about how many people visit my site or if its growing every month. Don’t get me wrong, I do love all of you guys that come and visit and am so thankful you are out there. I’m just no longer obsessed with growth. I want to give you good posts that can instruct and/or inspire you. I’d rather do quality over quantity and if I don’t write a post every other day, oh well. I think if I do that, it’ll grow on its own…or it won’t. Either way, I’m ok with that. So for that reason, I keep that old chicken pot pie recipe up there to remind me of where I was and how far I’ve come since then and to keep me writing quality posts. I think I’ve rambled enough. Sorry ’bout that.

Adding the leftover chicken thighs that were cooked on the BGE a few days before.

Adding the leftover chicken thighs that were cooked on the BGE a few days before.

      This chicken pot pie recipe comes from Ree Drummond, aka The Pioneer Woman, and can be found all over the net under pot pie or chicken pot pie or leftover turkey pot pie. It can also be found in her book “The Pioneer Woman Cooks”. Of course, we’re not real good at following recipes here at Griffin’s Grub and usually end up tweaking it to suit our own needs.

Adding chicken broth

Adding chicken broth

Ingredients

(this is for our modified version, if you want her original recipe, it should only take a couple of seconds searching on Google)

  • 2 pie crusts (she calls for using her Perfect Pie Crust recipe (and only 1) and I would like to try that one day, but sometimes life gets in the way and time gets the best of you. We used pre-bought pir crusts. Still came out great, but I hang my head in shame)
  • 1/2 stick of butter
  • 1/2 cup finely diced onion
  • 1/2 cup finely diced celery
  • 2 cups of leftover chicken, diced (this took about 3 medium sized chicken thighs)
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 2 cups of low-sodium chicken broth
  • splash of white wine (optional)
  • 3/4 cups of heavy cream
  • 1 cup of frozen mixed veggies (we used a blend of peas, corn, carrots and green beans)
  • fresh thyme, chopped
  • Season-All and salt and pepper to taste
Adding the pot pie filling

Adding the pot pie filling

Directions

  1. Pre-heat oven (or Big Green Egg if you feel like braving the cold weather, we didn’t) to 400F
  2. Melt butter in a large skillet on medium heat. Add onions and celery and cook until translucent.
  3. Add chicken and allow to cook for a few minutes.
  4. Sprinkle flour over mixture and allow to cook for a few minutes, stirring constantly.
  5. While continuing to stir, add in chicken broth, a splash of white wine and heavy cream.
  6. Add in a cup of frozen veggies.
  7. Bring to a slow boil and allow mixture to cook and thicken for a few minutes.
  8. Add in fresh thyme, season-all and salt and pepper to taste.
  9. Line a 9″ pie pan with one pie crust (The Pioneer Woman only topped her pot pie with a pie crust, we like crust on the top and bottom of our pot pies. Use one or two, depending on what your family likes)
  10. Pour the mixture into the pie pan.
  11. Place the second crust on top of the pot pie mixture and press the crust into the side of the dish. Cut slits in the top of the crust. (if you have to trim the edges of the crust, you can make a design with it and add it to the top. Mrs. G is responsible for those flower petals)
  12. Bake for 30 or 40 minutes, or until the crust is golden brown. (You may need to protect the edges of the pie part way through with a pie crust shield or aluminum foil to keep from burning)
  13. Allow to cool for 10 minutes before serving.
Into the oven pre-heated to 400F

Into the oven pre-heated to 400F

     I really wanted to try and bake this on the Big Green Egg, but it was kind of cold last night and I’m just now getting over being sick. I didn’t figure it was worth the risk of relapsing. Do you forgive me? Just this one time? I promise I’ll do the next one on the Egg.

Ready to eat

That piece of corn jumped out and tried to attack me! It was only due to my cat-like reflexes that I was able to deflect it! Sorry for the messiness.

     This came out soooo good! So creamy and savory. The hint of smoke from the chicken that was cooked on the BGE. The flaky, buttery crust. Mmmm…so good! And to think I have some leftover for lunch! I’m super excited about that. The only complaint, and it was our fault because we couldn’t wait any longer, is that it was a bit to liquid-ey (I don’t think that’s a word, but I don’t care). We were so hungry and it smelt so good, that we couldn’t wait ten minutes. Had we waited, I think it would have cooled more and thickened up. So that was our bad. Otherwise, the flavors were spot on.

Things I’d Do Different

  • I’d like to try it with home-made crust some day. I think it would be even better, but store-bought works in a pinch.
  • Get some ramekins and make individual pot pies. I don’t like big pot pies because they’re hard to get out of the pie pan in one nice, neat slice and then the filling starts spilling out everywhere. Just a big mess. I’d like to try individual ones.
  • Get a pie crust shield. I hate trying to make one out of aluminum. There must be a trick I’m missing.
  • Cook it on the Big Green Egg.

 

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