Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Homestyle Chicken 'n' Biscuits

Ladies and gentlemen, fall has descended upon us.

Look at that. Beee-youu-tee-fulllll.

When you live in the South - this beautiful, beautiful place - you know fall is near when the temp hits 69. When it hits 64, like today -- suddenly everything is better. People are happier, traffic is nicer (okay maybe not), everything just seems...right. Except the fact that stores have already decked their halls for Christmas. Is that odd to anyone else? But regardless...

I'm going to need fall to stick around for a few more months, yes? Yes.

I think we can all agree that with fall time comes some of the best food around. With the chill in the air and the excitement of the coming holidays and celebrations, I can't help but just want "real food."

My appetite has been wack lately - WACK, I say! Usually I'm all about the salads and the green smoothies with a side of quinoa and steamed veggies. But since the season began, all I want is the GOOD STUFF - comfort food like hearty soups and stews (thanks Natalie!!!!) and the like.

I'm even putting cheese on my veggies. WHAAATT????

I think I just like to feel warm and cozy from the inside out.

...And what better way to do that than curling up on the couch with a quilt, a Hallmark movie (or some Big Bang choose ;) ), and a bowl of hot, fresh-out-of-the-oven Chicken 'n' Biscuits????

Oh my gracious. Just looking at it again makes my stomach growl. I've said it before, but I really, really mean it this time...THIS is comfort food at its finest.

Actually, I really, really meant it the last time I said it, too. And every other time before that.

I always mean what I say when I tell you things, invisible blog friends.

Always, always, always.

Honesty is the best policy =)

Truth? I've never made chicken and biscuits. I don't know if I've ever eaten it, honestly. I was raised a chicken & dumplins girl and thought that chicken and biscuits was just a knock off.

But no, friends. Yesterday, for some reason it was all I could think about. I had to try it. HAD TO.

And I'm not sorry.

Like, at all.

It does take a little time, but this recipe is super simple and flavorful - I actually used canned buttermilk biscuits (a rarity for me) to save time, and I won't change a thing when I make it again! It's chock full of veggie goodness, too, so you don't have to feel too guilty. It will make your tummy so, so happy - guaranteed.

As for the chicken, I used chicken legs but you could easily substitute thighs, or even skinless chicken breasts if that's what you have on hand. I highly recommend dark meat for this one, though - it really adds to the flavor of the dish.

We ate this last night alongside some broccoli that I sprinkled with garlic and baked in the oven. Delish. I highly recommend!

I hope you'll give this a try - and that it warms you up from the inside out as the temperatures begin to drop a little further :)

Homestyle Chicken 'n' Biscuits

Lightly adapted from The Novice Chef blog
Serves 4

What You'll Need:

2.5 tbsp stick butter/margarine, chopped
1 tbsp onion, chopped fine
2 tsp garlic powder (not garlic salt)
1 bag frozen veggies (I used a broccoli, cauliflower, and carrot combo), thawed
2 stalks celery, chopped
1 medium potato, cubed
2-3 chicken legs or thighs
1/2 cup flour
2 cups milk
1.5 cups chicken broth (left over from your chicken)
Small can buttermilk biscuits (I used the 5 count)
Zero fat cooking spray or less than a tsp of butter
Paprika - optional

What You'll Do:

Place chicken in a pot with hot water, add salt and pepper to taste, then cook until completely done. Pull or cut into small pieces and set aside.

Chop potato and boil until cooked, about 10 minutes, depending on size. Meanwhile, in a separate larger pot or Dutch oven, melt butter and add onion, celery, and garlic powder. Saute for 3-4 minutes, then add your veggies: broccoli, cauliflower, and carrots. Add potato once cooked.

Stir veggies to ensure they are covered with butter and garlic mixture. Add flour and stir constantly for about 2 minutes so that everything is completely covered. Add milk a little at a time, continuing to stir until completely mixed.

Spoon in chicken broth until mixture is creamy and slightly soupy, but not to point of it becoming too broth-y. Add chicken and stir, adding salt, pepper, garlic and/or paprika to taste.

Rub a thin layer of butter on the bottom of a casserole dish (or spray with cooking spray) to prevent sticking, then arrange biscuits. Bake according to directions, but take out of oven after half the time (i.e., if directions call for 12 minutes of baking, take biscuits out after 6 minutes).

Once biscuits are halfway cooked, take dish out of the oven and pour chicken mixture on top, spreading evenly. Return the dish to oven and bake at 375 for 15-20 minutes.

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