Thursday, January 19, 2012

Baked Chicken with Homemade Cheese Sauce

The other night, we were looking for something new to make to dress up chicken. Well, this cheese sauce isn't exactly new to us, we use the same principle to make our Homemade Mac & Cheese.

Here's what you need:
1 package of chicken (we used chicken tenders)
Kosher Salt
Black Pepper
Chipotle Chili Powder

Cheese Sauce:
2 Tbsp unsalted butter
2 Tbsp flour
1/4 tsp kosher salt
dash of white pepper
1 cup milk
3/4 - 1 cup cheddar cheese

Here's what you do:
Preheat your oven to 350.

Season your chicken with salt, pepper, and chipotle chili powder. Don't go too crazy on the seasoning, just sprinkle over the top.

For chicken tenders, you need to bake for about 30 minutes. If you're using chicken breast, you'll probably need 1 hour to 1 1/4 hour to cook them through. The internal temperature of the meat should be at 170 degrees.

About 10 minutes before you're ready to put food on the table, start your sauce. Melt the butter over medium heat.

Add the flour, salt and white pepper. If you don't have white pepper, you can use black. You just won't have a completely white sauce.

Whisk that all together until you have a pretty loose roux. 

Now, slowly add the milk, whisking the whole time to combine the roux and milk.

Whisk, whisk, whisk until it's combined completely and not lumpy.

Keep whisking, though with less vigor than before. You just want to keep it moving so it doesn't burn. Let the sauce come up to a low boil. Let it cook for about two minutes, until it thickens.

Now, you're ready to add your cheese.

Stir in a little bit of the cheese at a time, until it melts completely.

Is there anything better than cheese sauce? And, with this one, you get the added bonus of it being healthier than the process junk you can buy in the store. It only takes 10 minutes. We also put some on top of our steamed broccoli and cauliflower. 


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