Monday, October 4, 2010

Buffalo Chicken Chili Mac

Do you want a flavorful and quick meal that everyone will love?  You've come to the right blog.  This recipe has been sitting in my binder for almost 2 years, and this is the first time I've made it.  However, let me assure you, it won't be the last!  The kids loved this!  Now, we can all agree that nothing takes the place of good saucy buffalo wings, but this is a great twist on those delicious little wing dingers!  I adjusted the heat level to accommodate tender tongues, but we all agreed in the end to make it with more hot sauce and pepper jack cheese (see, it's good to know that you can cut the heat back a bit, eh?!  Just decrease the amount of hot sauce and use monterey jack cheese instead!)

Buffalo Chicken Chili Mac
Source:  Rachael Ray

2 tbl. olive oil
2 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 4-6), cut into small chunks
2 large carrots, peeled and chopped
1 large onion, chopped
3 ribs celery, finely chopped
5 large garlic cloves, minced
1 tbl. paprika
1 bay leaf
salt and pepper to taste
2 cups chicken stock
1/2 cup hot sauce
1 15-oz. can of diced tomatoes
1 pound whole wheat or regular macaroni noodles
1/2 cup pepper jack cheese
1/2 cup crumbled blue cheese

Trim chicken of excess fat and dice into small chunks.  Place a large pot over medium heat and add olive oil.  Add the chicken and cook until browned.  Add the carrot, onion, celery, garlic, paprika, bay leaf, and salt and pepper.  Cook the veggies, stirring frequently, until tender, 3-4 minutes.  Add the chicken stock and scrape up any browned bits from the bottom of the pot.  Add the hot sauce and diced tomatoes (undrained), and bring up to a bubble.  Simmer the chili for 8-10 minutes to let the flavors blend.

While the chili is simmering, toss the pasta in a pot of boiling salted water and cook until al dente, according to the package directions.  Once cooked, drain and toss it into the chili.  Mix to combine, then transfer everything to a large casserole dish.  Sprinkle the cheeses evenly over the top and place it under the broiler until the cheeses have melted and the top is golden brown, 2-3 minutes.

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