Fleur de Lis

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Saturday, August 2, 2014

Buffalo Chicken & Rice Casserole topped with Blue Cheese Crumbles

I was in the mood for hot wings, but I wanted something a little more substantial than just wings.  So, Lolly started thinking about the flavors of chicken wings, what is usually served with carrots and celery and then added rice to give it some uuumph.  The result was a wonderful mixture of flavors and textures and completely satisfied the hot wing craving.  

3 cups cooked rice
1 lb. boneless/skinless chicken tenders cut into 1 inch cubes
2 T. olive oil, divided
2 T. butter, divided
1/2 - 3/4 cup of your favorite hot wing sauce (I used Moore's Buffalo Wing Sauce)
1/2 - 3/4 cup of your favorite ranch dressing
8 oz. cream cheese
2 carrots, diced small
2 ribs celery, diced small
1 small onion, diced small
1 t. minced garlic
4 oz. blue cheese crumbles
celery leaves for garnishing

In a large skillet over medium high heat add 1 T. olive oil and 1 T. butter.  When the oil shimmers, add the chicken cubes and cook for 5 - 6 minutes until chicken is cooked through and browned.

Lower the heat to low and add the hot wing sauce and ranch dressing and mix well.

Add the cream cheese and let it melt and blend in with the chicken and sauce.

While the chicken and sauce simmer, heat the remaining oil and butter in a small skillet over low heat and add the carrots, celery, onions and garlic. Let the vegetables just begin to soften.  You want to taste a little crunch when the casserole is complete.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees and begin to slowly add in the rice a few spoonfuls at a time to the chicken/sauce.  And then add in the vegetables.  Continue mixing until everything is well combined.

Lightly spray a 9 x 13 baking dish and spoon in the casserole mixture.  Bake for 15 - 18 minutes until it begins to bubble.

Remove from oven and add the blue cheese crumbles.

Return to oven for 5 - 7 minutes until cheese has melted.  

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