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Momma’s Deep Dish Mac & Cheese

Momma’s Deep Dish Mac & Cheese

Momma's Deep Dish Mac & Cheese

Prep Time: 45 minutes

Total Time: 45 minutes

Serving Size: 15

Momma's Deep Dish Mac & Cheese

Momma's Deep Dish Mac & Cheese Recipe Type : Holiday Cuisine: Comfort Food Author: Meiko Cook time: 60 mins Total time: 1 hour Serves: 12 servings You can thank my mom for this delicious deep dish Mac & Cheese recipe. And her shortcut for allows you to achieve a solid yet creamy consistency without the hassle of making a homemade bechamel sauce

Ingredients

  • 16oz pack large elbow noodles
  • 2 eggs, whisked
  • 2 cups sharp cheese, shredded and divided
  • 1 cup smoked gouda, shredded and divided
  • 1 cup whole milk mozzarella, shredded and divided
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ teaspoon onion powder
  • ? teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 cup cottage cheese
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • water to boil noodles
  • 1 (10.75 oz.) can cheese soup or cream of mushroom
  • ¼ - ½ cup milk

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven 325 degrees
  2. In a large pot, boil water and prepare pasta as package instructs for al dente. Once pasta is al dente remove the pot off the heated burner. Pour pasta into strainer to remove water then add it back to the warm pot. Let the heat of the pot steam out any excess water off the noodles. Heat should be turned off.
  3. Add in butter to the pot and stir, the the residual heat melt the butter until it is completely dissolved and has coated all the pasta.
  4. In a separate bowl add together sour cream, cottage cheese, 1 cup of sharp cheddar, ½ cup gouda, and ½ cup of mozzarella, cheese sauce, milk and all of your seasonings and whisk well. Add the mixture to your pot of al dente noodles and make sure they are fully coated. This is the perfect time to taste the pasta mixture to ensure it is seasoned well. Feel free to add more salt and pepper if needed.
  5. By this time your pot should have cooled down. If so, this is a good time to add in your whisked eggs and lightly stir. No more tasting after the eggs have been added.
  6. In a generously greased baking pan (I used 11x7') pour in half of you pasta mixture. Top that layer with half of your remaining cheeses but make sure to save half. Then add in the remaining pasta mixture and top it evenly with the remaining three cheeses.
  7. Cover baking dish with aluminum foil and bake it for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes, increase the heat to 425 degrees, remove the aluminum foil and bake for an additional 10 minutes or until the cheese bubbles start to turn golden brown. Watch the oven closely to prevent burning. Serve warm!
  8. **I recommend that you purchase block cheese and shred it yourself. Pre-shredded cheeses tend to have a flour coating that prevents melting.

Notes

I recommend that you purchase block cheese and shred it yourself. Pre-shredded cheeses tend to have a flour coating that prevents melting.

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Lemony Southern Style Posole

Lemony Southern Style Posole

You all know that phrase, “when life gives you lemons, make lemonade.” This proverbial message was the crust and namesake of Beyonce’s visual album Lemonade. Many have shared their opinions on the artistic nature of the video, the exposed cheating in the lyrics, the credibility of Beyonce as a figure of empowerment, all the way down to conversations about the videos “plantation chic” fashion. I decided to chart a different course and share my opinions on her grandma’s actual lemonade recipe in this week’s newsletter. My feelings are pretty strong on this matter so make sure you watch the video.

In addition, I explored what other recipes you could and should be making when life hands you lemons. Check out all 6 of my lemon inspired recipes below:

Lemony Southern Style Posole

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Yield: 6-8

Lemony Southern Style Posole

Lemony Southern Style Posole- Is great in the fall when the weather has finally got cooler.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups chopped turkey meat (2 smoked turkey legs)
  • 8 cups chicken or vegetable broth
  • 3 cups mustard greens, chopped
  • 1 (28 oz) can hominy, drained and rinsed
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 4 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons cajun seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne
  • ¼ teaspoon chilli powder
  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • cilantro
  • 1 (4oz) can diced green chilis

Instructions

  1. In a large pot bring broth to a rolling boil. Add all ingredients and reduce the heat to medium low and simmer, uncovered, until the onions are tender.
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Double Cheese Pulled Chicken Chili

Double Cheese Pulled Chicken Chili

This blog post has been compensated by Borden® Cheese. All opinions are mine alone. #BordenCheeseLove #CollectiveBias #Ad

My name is Meiko, and I am a chili fanatic. I don’t know what it is about a big warm bowl of chili, but I could literally eat it every day. There are so many versions of chili that I don’t think I could ever get bored of it. I also love it because if you use your leftovers wisely, you could basically dump them in a chili and have an amazing new dish.

As a matter of fact, a few weeks ago, I made a bunch of spaghetti and had a ton of leftover meat sauce. I hate to waste, so I added a few clutch ingredients and magically turned it into chili.  I’m being a bit dramatic because there is clearly no magic involved, but you have to admit the ease and versatility of this dish is pretty awesome.

So I decided to check out this Fiesta Mart store that I’ve driven by a hundred times. I thought maybe a new store would give me so new inspiration, and it worked. This week I made a new recipe I like to call Double Cheese Pulled Chicken Chili. Sounds delicious right? IT IS!

 

I always start my chili with a roux. I know this is not a very common practice, but I think it add deeper flavor and helps to thicken the batch.  I basically heat my oil, add in in flour and toast it until it reaches a caramel brown. Then I literally dump in all the remaining ingredients and let the pot simmer so that all the flavors meld together. I also added cooked chopped chicken, which easily pulled apart as the chili cooked down. Next I added in the LOOOOOOOOVE, which for me is just a code for BRING ON CHEESE.😍 😍 😍

I wanted this chili to be full of LOVE and  extra cheesy, so while at Fiesta Mart I raided their large variety of Borden® Cheese. I narrowed in on Borden® Cheese Finely Shredded Four Cheese Mexican Shreds and Borden® Cheese Mozzarella String Cheese to achieve the, “ooey gooey-ness” that I was looking for. You can find where varieties of Borden® Cheeses are sold nearest to you by using their nifty store locator link.
Ok, so  I chopped up the string cheese into small chunks and submerged them into the batch of chili.

Then, upon serving, I added a healthy helping of the shredded cheese to the top and heated the bowl in the microwave for an extra 35 seconds to get it all melted.

The outcome was this amazing bowl of deliciousness. I’m telling you, this is what food memories are made of; heart-warming bowls of love that you enjoy with your framily (friends + family 😊).  This new recipe is definitely going to be a recurring staple in my chili rotation.

Let me know what your favorite type of chili is below.

Double Cheese Pulled Chicken Chili

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour

Total Time: 1 hour, 15 minutes

Serving Size: 10-16

Double Cheese Pulled Chicken Chili

Double Cheese Pulled Chicken Chili - Is made with a thick roux base and mix of delicious pulled chicken and ooey gooey chunks of cheese with each bite. This simmering pot of love warms up any occasion, from Game Day to a heartwarming family meal.

Ingredients

  • !Chili
  • ? cup vegetable oil
  • ? cup flour
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced
  • 3 cups low-sodium chicken stock
  • 2 (15-ounce) cans dark kidney beans, drained
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • ½ cup Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • 1 (4-ounce) can diced jalapeño peppers
  • 1 tablespoon Louisiana style hot sauce
  • 5 medium cloves garlic, minced
  • 3½ pounds cooked skinless, chicken, cut into medium chunks
  • 3 Borden® Cheese Mozzarella String Cheese, chopped ½ inch segments
  • 1 (8 oz) pack Borden® Cheese Finely Shredded Four Cheese Mexican Shreds
  • chopped green onion for garnish
  • Seasoning blend
  • 2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon

Instructions

  1. In a small bowl, whisk together all of the seasoning blend ingredients and set aside.
  2. In a heavy large pot, heat oil on medium. Add in flour and whisk continuously until the flour reaches a caramel brown.
  3. Add in diced onion and bell peppers, and cook while covered for five minutes. Then add in chicken stock, kidney beans, tomato paste, Worcestershire sauce, canned tomatoes, canned jalapeños, and hot sauce and stir well. Cook covered for 5 minutes.
  4. Use wooden spoon to scrape the bits on the bottom of the pot and stir. Stir in chicken and garlic, and reduce heat to low. Cook for 30 minutes covered.
  5. Add in and submerge chopped mozzarella string cheese evenly spaced throughout the pot of chili. Increase heat to medium and cover the pot to allow the cheese to melt for 7-10 minutes.
  6. Ladle chili into a large bowls and top with a generous portion of Borden® Cheese Finely Shredded Four Cheese Mexican Shreds and green onion. Serve warm.
  7. Note: To get ooey gooey melted cheese on top of chili add bowl to the microwave on high for 20 seconds, then serve.
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Flamin’ Hot Cheetos Fried Chicken

Flamin’ Hot Cheetos Fried Chicken

Flamin Hot Cheetos Fried Chicken – What you get when you binge watch the Netflix series, Making A Murderer on an empty stomach?

Over the Christmas holiday I had the opportunity to binge watch a little television. If you know me, then you know I am not one for a scary movie. For some reason I forget that I’m watching a movie and my body starts to convulse and jerk as if I’m the one being chased down.  Its not a good look. All that to say, it was quite a surprise to me that in my leisure time I chose to start watching The Walking Dead and Making A Murderer. I guess there has been so much hype that I couldn’t resist.

 

I am only into season 3 of The Walking Dead but I am hooked. Please don’t spoil it for me. I did however get through all of Making A Murderer in about 2 days. I probably could have done it faster but I thought it was important to spend a few minutes with the family.

If you haven’t heard of Making A Murderer I seriously don’t know what rock you are living under.  The Netflix original series is a ten-episode documentary following the case of Steven Avery who was wrongfully imprisoned for 18 years, then released, only to be convicted of murder and placed back in prison for a life sentence.

 

Over the course of the series you are presented with evidence from both sides in hopes of figuring out if Avery did in fact commit the murder. I have watched and rewatched episodes trying to piece together alibis and storylines. There are so many plot twists and surprises a that you cant believe this is someone’s life let alone a credible justice system.

 

Long story short, all of this deliberating got me hungry and I decided to create a recipe inspired by the documentary.  Without spoiling it for those who have not seen it yet, I will say that there is a mobile home, a bonfire and blood referenced in the series and all of them served as my muse for the Flamin Hot Cheetos Fried Chicken.

To me, nothing says back woods more than a bag of flamin hot cheetos and that’s what these bad boys are crusted in. Surprisingly the dish is not too spicy to the tongue although it is packed with flavor.  In order to lock down a recipe I made the dish a couple of times until I got it just right. Here are a couple of tips that will help you replicate the dish:

  • Tip 1: I took an extra step and marinated my chicken in buttermilk and hot sauce over night. That step is not mandatory but highly recommended if you want your chicken to be moist and flavorful.
  • Tip 2: I would recommend is investing in a temperature gauge.  Every person’s stove is slightly different. Heat levels can vary depending if you are using an electric stove versus a gas stove. Heat level in turn alters that time at which it takes to cook the meat. The best way to determine if your meat is done is by the internal temperature. For chicken, you want to achieve an internal temperature of 165 degrees F.
  • Tip 3: To get extra crunchy fried chicken, like what’s pictured, I doubled dredged my chicken. I took the buttermilk marinated chicken and dipped it in my flour mixture, then dipped it in egg, then dipped it in the flour mixture again before putting it into the hot oil.
  • Tip 4: As soon as the chicken comes out of the hot oil lightly salt it. That way the seasoning latches on and cools with the chicken.
  • Tip 5: Try not to use paper towels to soak up excess oil or else your chicken can end up soggy. The heat from the oil will cause the paper towel to steam. Instead, drain and cool your chicken on a wire rack set.

If you plan to throw a Making A Murderer watch party this would be a great dish to impress with your friends and guests. Nothing says lovin like some fried chicken.

 

If you watched the documentary I am sure you have an opinion on where the truth lies.  My opinion, and it is only an opinion, is that Bobby Dassey and Scott Tadych had something to do with the murder. Their responses in court were just too strange to me. If you watched Making A Murderer I would love to hear your thoughts on the case. Leave your comments on the series and the recipe below. Enjoy and don’t forget to share this post with a friend!

Flamin Hot Cheetos Fried Chicken

Cook Time: 60 minutes

Serving Size: 4 servings

Flamin Hot Cheetos Fried Chicken

Flamin Hot Cheetos Fried Chicken - What you get when you mix your childhood snack obsession with your favorite comfort food. So Yummy!

Ingredients

  • 3 eggs
  • 1 bag Flamin Hot Cheetos
  • 3 cups flour
  • ½ cup corn starch
  • 1 (12 oz) bottle Louisiana hot sauce
  • 3 teaspoon paprika
  • 4 teaspoons cayenne pepper
  • 1 quart buttermilk (optional)
  • 1 (2½-3 pounds) chicken, cut into pieces
  • peanut oil (for frying)
  • salt, pepper, and garlic Powder (to taste)

Instructions

  1. (OPTIONAL BUT RECOMMENDED STEP) Start this recipe the night before. In a large bowl make marinade by stirring together hot sauce and buttermilk. Season the chicken pieces generously with salt, pepper and garlic powder. Put chicken in the bowl making sure that the chicken is completely covered in marinade. Cover the bowl and put in the fridge overnight or a minimum of two hours.
  2. In a deep pot heat the peanut oil to 325 degrees F. Do not fill the pot more than ½ full with oil.
  3. If marinated, place chicken on baking sheet to let excess buttermilk fall off. Let the chicken reach room temperature before frying.
  4. In a food processor pulse flamin hot cheetos until they are like the consistency of flour. In a bowl, whisk together flamin hot cheetos, flour, corn starch, cayenne pepper, paprika and salt until completely blended.
  5. In a medium size bowl, beat the eggs.
  6. Dip the chicken in the egg, and then coat well in the flour mixture. Place the chicken in the preheated oil and fry the chicken in the oil until brown and crisp. Chicken should cook for approximately 11-13 minutes.
  7. Drain chicken on wired baking sheet and lightly salt as soon as you pull it out of the oil.
  8. NOTE: For extra crispy fried chicken, as pictured, adjust step 6 by dredging chicken directly in flour mixture, then egg, then flour mixture again before placing in the hot oil.
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Loaded Monster Carne Asada Nachos

Loaded Monster Carne Asada Nachos

Have you been tasked with bringing a dish to the Super Bowl Party? Need something that doesn’t require too much fuss but you want it to taste great? Well these aren’t you ordinary nachos my friend. Tortilla chips, steak fries, cheese, guacamole and tender, juicy flavorful carne asada …. “over the top” doesn’t begin to describe the amazingness of this crowd pleaser.

Yes  it’s over the top but everything about the Super Bowl is over the top. This is the time that you bring out the big guns. This, let me remind you, is the showcase show down of showcase show downs. And the star is the meat.

This marinade is mainly comprised of soy sauce and orange juice and dang near punches you in the face with flavor. I recommend marinating it at least three hours but no longer than twelve hours.  This carne asada almost didn’t make it this this blog. I couldn’t stop eating and neither will you.

The game changer here is the addition of steak fries, YYYAAAASSSS honey. These nachos are what dreams are made of which is why they have earned the name “MONSTER”.

Layer on the chips, the fries, the beans, the cheese, the meat and bake. Then add “le flair”,  the guac, the crema and my rustic pico de gallo. Be careful here because all pico de gallo’s aren’t created equally, this guy is spicy, I mean really spicy. If you can’t handle the heat, make sure to remove the jalepeno seeds or use a store bought mild pico de gallo or salsa.

Once you set these out they won’t be around for long. So make sure you make yourself a plate first. Enjoy and subscribe to my mailing list for more delectable recipes.

Loaded Monster Carne Asada Nachos

Prep Time: 3 hours

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 3 hours, 30 minutes

Serving Size: 6-8

Loaded Monster Carne Asada Nachos

Loaded Monster Carne Asada Nachos- Are the ultimate game day appetizer - loads of cheese, marinated tender steak, pico de gallo, guacamole and more! Eat 'em while their hot and make another batch for the second half!

Ingredients

  • *Marinade
  • ¾ cups orange juice
  • ? cup lime juice
  • 5 garlic cloves, minced
  • ? cup soy
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 fajita seasoning packet
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 lbs skirt steak
  • *Nachos
  • 1 bag tortilla chips
  • 1 bags steak fries, cooked
  • 1 (16oz) can black beans, drained
  • 2½ cups freshly shredded cheddar cheese
  • 2 tablespoons taco seasoning
  • ¼ cup Mexican crema or sour cream
  • 3 large avocados, chopped and mashed

Instructions

  1. *Marinade
  2. Add all of the other marinade ingredients (before you add the meat) into a large ziplock bag and shake well. Put meat in the bag and massage meat making sure that the marinade gets over all the meat. Refrigerate for 3 - 8 hours.
  3. *Nachos
  4. Cook/bake steak fries per instructions.
  5. Brown the skirt steak in large skillet on high, cooking each side anywhere from 30 seconds to 1 minute. Remove meat from skillet and let it rest. Once cooled, thinly slice the meat against the grain.
  6. Preheat oven 425 degrees. On a rimmed 9-by-13-inch baking sheet, evenly spread out tortilla chips, top with an even layer of steak fries and sprinkle across with taco seasoning. Add a layer of shredded cheese, and evenly spread out black beans, followed by the sliced meat and one more heaping layer of cheese. Bake until grated cheese is completely melted, about 7-10 minutes.
  7. Top with avocado, pico de gallo and drizzle all over with crema. Serve right away.
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