Friday, January 13, 2012

Buffalo Chicken Pizza

I have two cats. They're wonderful. They were my initially my husband's cats. Then, when we got married, I sort of inherited them. Well, truth be told, one of them came over to my side very shortly after my husband and I started dating. In fact, lately, she's almost quite literally been at my side (or on my lap, or sitting next to me, or laying on top of my arms as I'm trying to type...) most minutes I'm home. She's not really one to take a hint or realize that I have stuff to do.

The other cat took a while to come around.  I think she thought I was invading her turf. We're now BFF, but it took her a while to determine that I was OK.

I think what made her come around was that I cook with chicken a lot. She would mysteriously appear at my side and wander through the kitchen with that "oh, hi! I'm just passing through" look about three seconds after the raw chicken got out of the fridge. After a while, she stopped doing it. But recently, she's picked up the habit again. It's so adorable it makes me want to cook with chicken even more. Especially when it's to make such delicious things like this Buffalo Chicken pizza. It's an excellent change in the "pizza night" rotation .

Buffalo Chicken Pizza
Recipe from Rachael Ray, adapted
Serves 3-ish
Cook & Prep Time - about 30 min

  • 3/4 pound chicken breasts (about 2 breasts)
  • Extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling
  • salt & pepper, for seasoning chicken
  • 1 pizza dough (I make my own)
  • Cornmeal or flour, to handle dough
  • 4 TBSP butter
  • 2 TBSP Worcestershire sauce
  • 6 TBSP hot sauce (Frank's)
  • 1 cup tomato sauce
  • 1 - 1 1/2  cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
  • 1/2 cup blue cheese crumbles (I leave this off - we don't like it)
  • 3 scallions, thinly sliced

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F and preheat grill pan to medium-high.

Drizzle olive oil over the chicken then season generously with salt & pepper. When grill is hot, add chicken and cook about 3 minutes on each side, until cooked through and has a nice sear. Let rest for a few minutes and then thinly slice.

Stretch dough to form pizza using cornmeal or flour to help you handle it. Poke it with a fork a few times so it doesn't puff up too much during the cooking. Bake for about 5 minutes. Take out of the oven and set aside.

In a medium skillet over medium heat, melt butter and stir in Worcestershire, hot sauce, and tomato sauce. Stir to combine. Once combined and warm, remove from heat. Take about half of it and put on top of the pizza crust.

 Add chicken to the remaining sauce and coat. Put the chicken on top of the pizza and then drizzle with any remaining sauce. Cover with cheese and then add the scallions. Bake 15-18 minutes or until crisp and the cheese is bubbly.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Overnight Cinnamon Rolls

On holiday mornings, I love to wake up to a nice fresh batch of cinnamon rolls. But I seem to always run into the problem that if I make them at night before bed, they're good the next morning, but you don't get that "fresh from the oven" goodness. If you make them in the morning... you have to get up at about 4 am to have fresh rolls by the time normal people wake up. Am I the only one that has that issue? No? Maybe?

When I saw Alton Brown's Overnight Cinnamon Roll recipe, I knew it would be the solution to all my fresh roll issues. The basic idea is that you make the rolls the night before, then in the morning, get them in a nice humid oven, let them rise for a half an hour, and then bake. Unfortunately, the rising didn't happen quite as quickly as Alton said it would. I had to let mine rise for over an hour before they had risen enough to bake. So, instead of having rolls around 10:30 or 11, we ended up eating them closer to noon. That counts for breakfast on a holiday, right?

They were worth the wait, though. They were everything I wanted in a cinnamon roll, and the frosting, while super sweet, complimented the rolls perfectly. As a bonus, they keep really well in the fridge, too - and with a quick zap in the microwave, they taste just about as good as they did when they were fresh!

Because I didn't change his recipe one bit, out of respect for Mr. Brown, you can find the recipe for these amazing rolls here:

1/2/2012 Update: I've submitted these to the Sweets for a Saturday on Sweet as Sugar Cookies.