Newlyweds navigating their way through married life – and the kitchen

Monthly Archives: September 2012

Buffalo Chicken Dip

What is it about babies and buffalo chicken that go hand in hand?  Probably nothing, but it seems lately that they go together like peas and carrots.

Back in April, it was Becky’s Having a Baby Buffalo Chicken Eggrolls – in an effort to push baby Lane along, I brought these to a pre-baby ladies lunch at Becky’s house, hoping that a little spiciness would have Lane saying “Man it’s hot in here – I gotta get out!” – and while they didn’t send Becky into labor, they were still pretty tasty.

Buffalo Chicken DipAnd yesterday, Buffalo Chicken Dip was a celebratory snack for my other college gal pal Lauren and her husband Steve.  They welcomed their first baby girl, Dylan Olivia, into the world on August 30th.  Lauren was a trooper, practically going through full labor and THEN after all of that, having to get an emergency C-Section – oye.  So I imagined showing up to Lauren and Steve’s front door, and Lauren being sprawled out on the couch, buried under blankets with a cold-compress on her head, looking faint and exhausted.  Silly me – Lauren greeted us at the door, perfectly put together with the most stylish of ‘post-baby’ outfits, with Little Dyllie Doo-Doo in one arm, and the other arm open for a hug. Dylan is the cutest little nugget – and while I was a little disappointed at the super dark hair she was sporting the first few days, in person, the faintest hint of red hair (just like her mom’s)  is starting to show through – so I’m really hoping that next time we see her, she’s a full blown ginger!

Lauren looooves Buffalo Chicken Dip, so while I wasn’t there in the hospital to hold her hand or feed her ice chips, I was there yesterday with a massive bowl of Buffalo Chicken Dip with her name written all over it 🙂

Dyllie’ Doo-Doo’s Buffalo Chicken Dip

INGREDIENTS

2 – 8oz blocks of cream cheese
(I used 1/3 fat version)

1 – 16 oz. bottle of Ranch dressing
(or you could use Blue Cheese)

2-3 stalks of celery, chopped

5-6 cooked chicken tenders, chopped into small pieces

1 bottle of Frank’s Hot Sauce
(you can use more or less, depending on how spicy you like it)

1 – 8oz bag of cheddar cheese

crumbled blue cheese for garnish
(optional)

1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2) In a saucepan, melt cream cheese and ranch dressing together over medium heat until most lumps have disappeared (it’s ok to still have some lumps).

3) Place the chopped celery, chopped chicken and hot sauce in a 9×13″ baking dish and mix together.  Pour the cream cheese and ranch dressing mixture in and mix until combined.

4) Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 20 minutes.

5) After 20 minutes, take the dip out of the oven and add the cheddar cheese.  You can either sprinkle it on the top, or mix it all together (I like to mix it).

6) Bake for another 10 minutes, uncovered, until bubbly on top.  Sprinkle with a little blue cheese and serve hot!

The finished product is can be served with tortilla chips, carrot and celery sticks, or just stick a spoon in there and go to town!  This is one of those dips that once you start, it’s really hard to stop, so brace yourselves.

Congrats to Lauren and Steve and welcome to the world Dylan! Sure hope you like Buffalo Chicken 🙂

Buffalo Chicken Dip

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Black Bean Veggie Soup

Ok, Labor Day has come and gone – September is in full swing – and I know that techincally it’s still summer, but I think it’s safe to start sharing some “fall-ish” recipes.

I’m a brown-bag lunch kind of gal (even though my ‘brown bag’ is actually a plastic grocery bag that hasn’t been used to pick up dog poop).  And after doing the math, I realized that I may actually eat more meals at the office than I do in my own home! Augh – sighhhhh.

It’s real easy to get real bored with lunch from week to week.  There are only so many lunch meats and 100-calorie snack packs to be rotated.  So soup can really put a spring in my lunch step!  And this Black Bean Veggie Soup is a keeper – it get’s an A++++++, because not only is it:

a) pretty

b) easy to make

c) lasts for an entire week’s worth of lunch

It’s healthy, and only 4WW points per serving!

Black Bean & Veggie Soup
*Adapted from Allrecipes.com

INGREDIENTS
*1 serving = 1.5 cups
yields about 6 servings (9 cups total)

2 tbsp. olive oil

2 large carrots, peeled and chopped

1 medium onion, chopped

2 large garlic cloves, minced

1 tbsp. Chili powder

1 tbsp. cumin

2 cups chicken stock

2 – 15oz. cans black beans, rinsed and drained

1 – 28oz can crushed tomatoes

1 – 8.75 oz. can whole kernel corn

salt & pepper to taste

1) In a large saucepan or dutch oven, heat olive oil over medium heat; cook onion, carrots and garlic until onion is softened (about 5 minutes).

2) In the meantime, take the crushed tomatoes and 1 can of black beans and puree them together in a food processor.  Set aside.

3) Add chili powder and cumin to onion/carrot/garlic mixture and cook stirring for about a minute.

4) Add the chicken stock, 1 can of black beans and can of kernel corn and bring to a boil.

5) Once the veggies have come to a boil, add the black bean and tomato puree to the pot.  Reduce heat, cover soup, and simmer for about an hour.  Add salt & pepper to taste.

I think the longer you simmer, the better, but I would advise atleast an hour. It really gives all the flavors a chance to really meld together.

This is also a great base for a chilli – I often times will add chicken or lean ground beef to this to make it a more hearty stew vs. soup, but regardless, you’re used plastic grocery bag will be happy 🙂 And so will your belly!



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