Buffalo Chicken Bites

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Fall is the season for football games, basketball games, new TV shows, and this year—lots of election coverage. Sometimes it’s nice to skip the big meal and just have some finger foods to nibble on instead. This recipe has made the rounds of Good Morning America, Rachel Ray, Saveur Magazine and Martha Stewart—and it’s no wonder, because it is good and very simple to make. I made mine in the morning, put the baking sheet with the uncooked chicken bites in the refrigerator during the day and pulled it out about an hour before cooking to bring it up to room temperature. Half an hour later, we had a snack that served our family of four as a meal.

Buffalo Chicken Bites

Makes 36 1-inch bites

Ingredients:

2 tablespoons vegetable oil
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/3 cup Frank’s RedHot Sauce
1 pound ground chicken (I asked the butcher to grind chicken thigh meat for me)
1 large egg
½ celery stalk, minced
¾ cup Panko bread crumbs
Blue Cheese Dip (see below)

Preparation:

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Coat the bottom of a rimmed baking sheet with the vegetable oil and set aside. In a small saucepan, melt the butter and then add the hot sauce, stir to combine and leave to cool a bit while you mix the meat.

In a medium sized bowl, mix together the ground chicken, egg, celery and bread crumbs. Add the butter/hot sauce mixture and combine well. Using a teaspoon, scoop mounded teaspoons of the meat mixture into small balls about 1-inch in diameter. Put the balls on the oiled baking sheet (they may be close together, this is fine.)

Bake for 30 minutes, remove from the oven and allow to cool for at least 5 minutes before serving. Serve with Blue Cheese Dip and celery.
Blue Cheese Dressing

Makes 1 ½ cups

Mix together and chill:

½ cup mayonnaise
½ cup sour cream
½ cup crumbled blue cheese
1 teaspoon red wine vinegar
Salt and pepper to taste

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