Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Mac & Cheese with Chicken and Broccoli

When I initially planned the menu for this week I was going to make one of the recipes from Rachael Ray's 365: No Repeats cookbook, a variation on the mushroom egg noodle bake that involved chicken and broccoli. At work yesterday I was searching for the recipe online, but I couldn't find it. I did, however, find this other RR recipe for Mac and Cheddar Cheese with Chicken and Broccoli that sounded even better than the one I was planning to make.

I made a few alterations in the cooking method, but otherwise everything is the same. To save time I cooked the chicken last night in some olive oil. When I got home tonight I started the sauce by melting some butter in a pot and cooking the chopped onion. Once that cooked for about 7 minutes I added the flour, cayenne and paprika to make the roux. Since I was using egg noodles (they come in 12-ounce packages), I only used 2 cups of milk and 1 cup of chicken broth. Once the sauce was thick I added the Dijon, salt and pepper to taste and the cooked chicken so it could warm through. After the noodles and broccoli cooked, I added the cheese to the sauce and then the sauce to the noodles and broccoli.

I really enjoyed this dish. The Dijon added a nice kick and there was some mild spiciness from the cayenne. The broccoli was perfectly cooked (not too mushy, but not crunchy) and the chicken was tender. It's definitely a keeper in my book. We'll see what SP thinks when he gets home.
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