A lot has changed since last year:
- We had a baby(!!!), Quinlan Anastasia, born March 10, 2012
- We built a house (meet Brandon, husband and General Contractor -- it's a tough job!)
- We moved into our house one week after Quinnie was born
- I was hospitalized with a pulmonary embolism a week later--I survived, but not without further health complications--I now enjoy weekly blood draws and blood thinners, hooray!
- I am now back to work full time, from home
- We are still working on the completion of the lower level of our home (a walk-out basement and garage)
What can I say? We're overachievers here at the Bogue house ;).
ANYhow, back to the Food Network. I don't often tune into Rachel Ray's show, but we ended up watching an episode where she used cornbread as a casserole topper. WHAT?! How could we never have thought of this??? Brandon and I both quickly googled the recipe, mouths watering--and then I worked on converting it for our tastes.
What follows is a modified recipe. I cook large batches because, like many moms out there know, leftovers make weeknights SO much easier! I've also included shots of this awesome herb spread, courtesy of Ina Garten, as well as some Paula Deen Cajun Fried Okra & Green Beans. That recipe was good, but unfortunately, our okra was not (too woody)--but we did finally get the hang of frying in my dutch oven.
Note: Bake time will vary depending on what size casserole dish you use. I used my 5-quart Le Creuset braiser to both prep and bake the casserole in, and it took about 35 minutes.
BBQ Chicken & Cornbread Casserole
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (EVOO), divided
2 rotisserie chickens, de-boned, chopped into bite-sized pieces
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 large onion, chopped into bite-sized pieces
4 carrots, peeled and chopped into bite-sized pieces
4 stalks celery, peeled and chopped into bite-sized pieces
4 cloves garlic, minced
6 tablespoons butter
6 tablespoons flour
4 cups low-sodium chicken stock
1 bottle (18 oz) BBQ sauce (I used Bull's-Eye Texas)
2 boxes cornbread mix (I used Jiffy brand)
6 jalapenos, pith and seeds removed, minced
8 ounces frozen corn, thawed
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
Preheat the oven to 375° F.
Heat 2 tablespoons EVOO in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chopped chicken chunks, season with salt and pepper and sauté until golden brown, about 5 minutes. Remove chicken from skillet and reserve on a plate.
Return the skillet to medium-high heat and add another tablespoon of EVOO. Add the onion, carrot, celery and garlic, season with salt and pepper, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are tender, 5-6 minutes.
When the veggies are tender, push them to the edge of the pan. Add butter to the center of the skillet and sprinkle the flour over it. Cook for about 1 minute. Add chicken stock and barbecue sauce to the pan and stir to combine. Bring to a bubble, add the chicken back to the pan, season with salt and pepper and simmer the sauce until thickened, about 5 minutes.
While the sauce is simmering, in a medium-size mixing bowl, prepare the cornbread according to package directions, using water as the liquid. Fold in jalapenos, corn and cheese.
Transfer the chicken mixture to a casserole dish and drop the cornbread batter on top in spoonfuls. Pop into the oven and bake until cornbread is golden brown and filling is bubbling, 20-30 minutes.
ALSO, CHECK OUT:
Paula Deen's Cajun-Fried Okra & Green Beans
Get the recipe here: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/paula-deen/cajun-fried-okra-recipe/index.html
Ina Garten's Herb Coeur a La Creme
Get the recipe here: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ina-garten/herb-coeur-a-la-creme-recipe/index.html