I am sure the green chile they get in New Mexico is a cut above what I use here, but it is still all good. I buy my chiles by the institutional sized can. I open it up and freeze them in smaller containers. Basically everything I can find in my kitchen at that point! Ice cube trays, 2 oz condiment containers, etc. So much more economical that way. I hate seeing those tiny cans at the grocery for over a dollar. I also have some amazing green chile powder that I ordered from New Mexico. I am pretty stingy with that. Since you all probably don't have access to that easily, I opted not to put it in this recipe, Still good...if you appreciate chiles. But if you happen to have some, by all means add a half a tsp to the ground chicken. This way is very mild. Even my hubby had no complaints.
Why ground chicken? I use ground chicken for several reasons. Although I am not a fan of the texture of the raw chicken, I do really like it once it is cooked. It is a little too sticky raw, but I can work with it. That is why the edges on these patties are not entirely smooth. It grabs the spoon a bit. I don't try to shape it with my hands like I would beef. But hey, ground turkey has the same problem, so why hate on the chicken? This is a really finely ground batch, and that is because of reason number two. I love to infuse flavor into the ground meat rather than have it sit on top. With ground chcken, you can mix all the good add ins right into the meat. I ground this chicken at home and added the chiles right in the processor with the chicken breasts. That's flavor infused. Did you notice that I said chicken breasts? That is reason number three. I like the fact that this ground meat is very lean. I am certainly not fat phobic, but I prefer leaner ground meats. They hold their shape better and make less mess. Plus, I do watch my calories these days and I would rather put my fats into coconut oil candies. You can certainly grind your own from dark meat, or buy ground chicken. I never seem to see it in my stores, but it must be out there somewhere... The last reason I like ground chicken is the price. Beef costs are soaring. Good quality turkey is expensive. Chicken breasts seem to go on sale often. That makes ground chicken about half the price (or less) of many other ground meats.
I have told you all this before, but for you newbies, I use my Ninja Master Prep to grind chicken breasts in under a minute. It takes longer to wash the blades and lid than to process the chicken. I am pretty picky about cleaning all the nooks and crannies since I use this for protein shakes as well. That part is a pain. Food processors would work too; they might take a bit longer. That all said, now back to this recipe.
|The 'Volcano" before filling|
Chicken and Green Chile Volcanoes
1 lb boneless skinless chicken breasts
8 oz canned green chiles
1/2 tsp garlic salt
Coconut oil cooking spray
4 oz neufchatel or cream cheese
1/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese
Grind chicken breasts with 4 oz green chiles and garlic salt. On a rimmed baking sheet, spoon the ground chicken into 4 mounds. Spray the back of a spoon with cooking spray and spray each mound as well. Smooth the mounds into round shapes. Spray the base of drinking glass with the pan spray. Press it into the mounds of chicken to form a well. Use a circular motion to make the well wider, and a twisting motion to release the glass. Repeat with each mound, spraying the glass in between each. Use the spoon to smooth the edges a bit for more even baking. Place into a preheated 350 degree oven for 15 minutes.
When cooking time is up, remove chicken from oven and collect roughly 2 tbsp of cooking juices. In a small bowl, combine cream cheese, the cooking juices, Cheddar and about 2 ounces of the chiles. Spoon this mixture into the wells in the chicken patties. Top each with the remaining green chile. Return to the oven for another 5 minutes.
Serves 4: 229 calories 3 net g carb
Yum. I served this new dish to my middle son Monday night. He gave a big thumbs up. We had a salad on the side along with grilled peppers, zucchini and onions. We have one leftover and it is lunch today. Woohoo for me!
I am crazy busy again. Working on a diabetic cookbook project for a wellness group. Gotta get back to it! Stay cool, but go ahead and turn on the oven for this one.
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