Buffalo Chicken Baked Shells

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I’ve been pinning various recipes lately, in hopes to find meals that all three family members will enjoy. When I came across these Buffalo Chicken Baked Shells on Baked by Rachel, I was sure I found a winner. I added an extra chicken breast and mushrooms to the recipe. I made 22 shells, 12 I baked the night that I prepared the meal, 10 I froze to be cooked at another date.

Ingredients

1 chicken breast ( I used 2 )
1 cup chicken broth
1/4 tsp salt
3/8 tsp pepper, divided
3/8 tsp celery seed, divided ( I didn’t have any, so it was left out)
1/4 cup buffalo sauce, plus additional for topping ( I used Texas Pete’s Hot Sauce)
1/4 cup celery, chopped
1/4 cup onion, chopped
1 tbsp butter or olive oil
12-15 jumbo shells
1 cup ricotta cheese
3 tbsp Parmesan cheese
1 egg
1/4 cup blue cheese crumbles
1/4 cup mozzarella cheese
1/4 cup mushrooms

Directions
Preheat oven to 375 degrees

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20140218-212209.jpgIn a slow cooker, add chicken and broth. Cook for two hours on high, then shred meat. My slow cooker has issues, so I cooked my frozen chicken for 1.5 hours on high. Discard liquid. Shred chicken and chop onion, celery and mushrooms. Season shredded meat with 1/4 tsp celery seed and 1/4 pepper and salt. Toss with buffalo sauce until meat is coated. Set aside.
In a large pasta pot bring water to a boil, add 12-15 jumbo shells to the water. Cook 9-12 minutes or until desired consistency is reached. Drain and let cool on a baking sheet or nonstick surface.

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In a small skillet over medium heat, add onion, mushrooms, celery and butter or olive oil. Sauté until tender and onions are translucent.

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In a large bowl, mix ricotta cheese, parmesan, egg, 1/8 tsp pepper, 1/8 tsp celery seed, blue cheese crumbles and vegetables. Add chicken mixture and stir well.

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Prepare baking dish with a light coating of olive oil and a few spoonfuls of buffalo sauce. Fill one shell at a time with spoonfuls of chicken and cheese mixture. Carefully arrange in prepared baking dish. Drizzle with spoonfuls of buffalo sauce and sprinkle with shredded mozzarella cheese. Baked for 20-25 minutes. I wrapped the tin tray tightly in plastic wrap and then closed in freezer friendly bag for use at a later date.

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Totally yummy! Thanks Baked by Rachel !

Picture Perfect Puzzle

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Rae of Sunshine took beautiful pictures of my niece and created her precious announcement.  I absolutely love this photo, so when it came time to take the announcement off of the fridge, I wasn’t ready to put away the picture.  The card stock that the photo is printed on is thick, so I figured that it was the perfect paper to use for a popsicle stick puzzle.

Materials:

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Photo

Modge Podge

Scissors

Popsicle Sticks

Small Paint Brush

Pencil

Directions:

IMG_1758Cut announcement portion off of picture.  Place photo on top of the popsicle sticks and cut off any access photo.

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On the back of the photo, place a popsicle stick flat and trace a line down the side of the stick, continue to do this until you run out of room.

IMG_1762Cut along the drawn lines.

IMG_1767Using the Mod Podge and a small paint brush, cover the back of each picture strip.  Place each strip evenly onto the popsicle sticks, making sure that one is in line with the other. Once glue is dry, using a small paint brush, cover the top of each popsicle stick with the Mod Podge.  Allow to dry.  The Mod Podge will create a sealant over the picture.

IMG_1946IMG_1947The perfect puzzle for this cousin lovin two year old!

Happy Valentine’s Day

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Whether you love the holiday or not, it’s here.  Share it with your sweetie, hang with your girls or ignore it all together.  We here at Selections By Sisters want to say a BIG thank you to all of you who have stopped by to our little space on the web and checked in on what we have to share.

Better-for-You Baked Mac

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This months issue of Parents Magazine couldn’t have come at a better time. Parents Magazine offered up 21 Twists on Mac ‘n’ Cheese. From a Greek Style to a Protein Boost; there’s a Mac ‘n’ Cheese for everyone!

We started with the basic Better-for-You Baked Mac recipe and added some chopped broccoli. The dish was super easy to make and was a hit with the little one!

Ingredients

Nonstick cooking spray

3 cups dried fusilli (or pasta of your choosing)

1/4 cup light butter with canola oil (we used regular salted stick butter)

3 Tbs. all-purpose flour

1/4 tsp.salt

3/4 cup plus 2 Tbs. low fat milk

1/3lb. fontina cheese, 1.5 cups shredded ( we used 1/2 lb. of fontina cheese)

1/2 cup whole-wheat panko bread crumbs.

Medium head of broccoli

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat 2-qt square baking dish (or what ever shape you have in at least the 2 quart range) with nonstick spray; set aside.

2. Chop broccoli, place in medium sauce pan with a small amount of water and a pinch of salt. Simmer on medium heat, stirring occasionally until broccoli reaches desired tenderness.

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3. Cook pasta as directed on package; drain and keep warm.

4. While pasta cooks, melt butter in medium saucepan. Add flour and salt; stir for 1 minute.

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5. Add milk and stir until thick and bubbly.

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6. Remove from heat; stir in cheese until melted.

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7. Toss together pasta, broccoli and cheese sauce. Transfer to prepared dish and sprinkle evenly with bread crumbs. Bake 20 minutes or until heated through.

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Thank you Parents Magazine for 21 twists to my daughters favorite meal!

Sweet Valentine Treats

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It’s definitely not a secret that I enjoy baking and somehow I got lucky enough to have two little boys that love to help! It’s an activity that Big H often requests and I hope that never changes. Since Valentines Day is just around the corner, we jumped at the opportunity to whip up a batch of our favorite sugar cut-out cookies to share with those we love. We hope you enjoy them as much as we do!

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Cut-Out Sugar Cookies

1 1/2 cups unsalted butter
3 cups white sugar
3 eggs
2 tsp. vanilla
5 cups flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt

1. In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugar. Beat in eggs and vanilla. Mix in flour, baking powder and salt. Chill dough for at least one hour.

2. Roll out dough on floured surface and cut into shapes with cookie cutters.

3. Bake on an ungreased cookie sheet for 6-8 minutes in a 400 degree oven.

Sugar Cookie Icing

1 cup confectioners sugar
2 tsp. milk
2 tsp. light corn syrup
1/4 tsp. almond or vanilla extract
Food coloring

Mix all ingredients together, adding more milk if necessary to reach desired consistency. Add a few drops of food coloring of choice and ice cookies. Icing will dry hard and shiny.