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Buffalo Shrimp Tacos with Smoked Bacon and Blue Cheese

Buffalo Shrimp Tacos with Smoked Bacon and Blue Cheese

What I’m about to give you is what might quite possibly be the quickest and easiest recipe I’ve done in a while. However don’t let the quickness and ease fool you, this recipe is big on flavor and quite fun to serve to your guest.

What to expect: There are few things that play better together than buffalo sauce, bacon, and blue cheese. Add some shrimp and you have yourself nothing short of Nirvana (the legendary place, not that weird rock group)I truly believe the beauty of the sauce lies in the balance of Tabasco, butter, and a pinch of garlic. I like the balance that the vinegar base of the Tabasco brings when paired with heavier flavors like blue cheese and bacon. And the shrimp? Well you wouldn’t be reading this if you didn’t like shrimp. However I tend to think it carries buffalo sauce as well as any wing.

Yield: 6 tacos

Mulitply the bacon, shrimp,and blue cheese as needed. The sauce will make easily enough for a triple batch.

* The yield will depend greatly on how much “snacking” you do while preparing this. It is FAR too easy snatch a shimp here, a slice of bacon there. So plan accordingly. But come on, if you don’t dip at least one shrimp and one bacon in the sauce while your grill side…… well YOU JUST AINT HUMAN.

What you will need:

1/3 cup Tabasco

1 cup unsalted butter

3 Tbls white vinegar

½ tsp Worcester sauce

1 Tbls chipotle powder

*Cayenne will work, I just prefer the smokey flavor chipotle brings. The pepper powder is what controls the heat of the sauce, so add or subtract according to your tolerance.

¼ tsp garlic powder

1 lb 30/40 shrimp, shelled, deveined, and tails removed.

6 or so bamboo or metal skewers

Salt and pepper

1 lb bacon

½ lb quality blue cheese

6 flour taco shells

How we did it:

Begin by placing all of your ingredients for the sauce in a “grill proof” pan and set aside.

Skewer the shrimp. Season well with salt and pepper and set aside in the refrigerator.

Set grill up of for indirect grilling. Add a couple of chunks of your favorite smoking wood. Place lid on, check and turn every 5-6 minutes, cooking to your prefered doneness.

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Arrange coals for direct grilling, adding more if necessary.

Oil grates, and place shrimp and sauce pan on grill.

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Stir the sauce until the butter is melted, then remove.

Cook the shrimp until it’s opaque and begins to turn pink.

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Once the shrimp is done gently toast the taco shells over the direct coals.

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Toss the shrimp in the sauce, I mean that both figuratively and literally.

All that’s left is to chop the bacon, crumple the blue cheese, and assemble.

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Now gather friends, family, and love ones around and enjoy!

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Remember what you cook isn’t nearly as important as who you cook it with.

 
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Posted by on February 2, 2017 in Uncategorized

 

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Bacon Wrapped Buffalo Chicken Bites

Bacon Wrapped Buffalo Chicken Bites

It always strikes me funny how fickle inspiration is. Try and try to come up with a new idea, and nothing. Then one morning the alarm clock goes off, waking me from a deep sleep, and before I can hit the snooze button not only do I have an idea, but most of the logistics worked out and the ingredient list made. This was one of those times. Going to a New Year’s Eve party, I said I would bring wings. But I’d done wings for these people before, and I don’t like doing the same thing over and over. I thought to myself, hmmmmm moink maybe? Nah, I’m sure somebody else is bringing meatballs. My waking thought was “There needs to be a chicken moink.” And as quickly as that this recipe was born.

What to Expect:

The bacon will help keep the chicken moist while doing what bacon does best, by adding flavor. The sauce will give you that wonderful Buffalo heat and flavor that we all love.

Yield: About 24 nice size chicken bites (minus whatever you “taste test” coming off the grill.)

What You Will Need:

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About an hour of time from beginning to end.

A grill setup for DIRECT grilling.

24 or so small wooden skewers (you can find these in the cooking supply aisle of most stores)

4 boneless skinless chicken breast rinsed and trimmed

1lb bacon

Salt and Pepper

1 1/3 cup hot pepper sauce

1 cup cold unsalted butter

3 tablespoons white vinegar

1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper (more or less depending on how spicy you want this)

1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

How We Did It:

Begin by soaking your skewers for 30 minutes in a glass of water.

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Rinse, dry, and trim the chicken breast of any unwanted fat, or loose meat.

Season meat with salt and pepper.

Slice into about 1/2 inch strips, crosswise.

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Wrap the chicken breast with the bacon, running your skewer through the bacon and chicken breast length wise and top to bottom to secure the bacon to the chicken.

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Grill over direct heat turning every 4 minutes to cook evenely on all sides. This took us about 30 minutes (lid on) but it was in the low 20’s and there was a breeze. In good weather they should cook much faster.

When they’re done the bacon should be browned and the chicken will be firm to the touch. If in doubt slice into one and check.

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While they rest, place the: 1 1/3 cup hot pepper sauce, 1 cup cold unsalted butter, 3 tablespoons white vinegar, 1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce, 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper (more or less depending on how spicy you want this), 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder in a small sauce pan and bring to a simmer. Cook until the butter is melted and everything is well blended.

Place wings in a large bowl, pour sauce over the top and toss.

Serve with traditional Buffalo wing dipping sauces such as Ranch and Blue Cheese.

Sorry I don’t have any finished, and platted photos. My phone froze, and by the time I was ready to take pictures…… well…… they were gone.

Have fun and happy New Year!

Remember: What you cook isn’t nearly as important as who you cook it with.

 
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Posted by on January 1, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

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A Talegate Town Approved Buffalo Chicken Sandwich

A Talegate Town Approved Buffalo Chicken Sandwich

You should be able to knock these out in about 60-90 minutes making them the PERFECT Talegate Town cook.

The down side to blogging about BBQ or any cooking you do yourself is that first you plate your food, give thanks, then as the rest of the family and/or guest dig in, you haul your plate off somewhere and take pictures of it. So if my feature picture is a little iffy, that’s because as Pooh Bear would say “I had a rumbley in my tumbley.” Let’s also keep in mind I’m a BBQ’r NOT a photographer or food stylist.

This sandwich has an amazing flavor and a nice little burn. The decision you make early on will determine if it’s going to have a true authentic Buffalo flavor and rather low heat, or if your going to go for a very close Buffalo flavor and get a very nice burn to go with it.

Let me explain. We made this recipe twice in two days (told ya it was good), once with Franks hot sauce and once with Tabasco. Having spent a small amount of time in the great state of NY near the Buffalo area, I can tell ya Franks is about all you can get up that way. You have about as much chance of finding Tabasco sauce in that area, as you do of finding a vegetarian at Memphis in May. As for me I tend to opt for that Avery Island gold known as Tabasco sauce. I really believe this is a North/South thing.

The first time we made it with Tabasco sauce, the sandwich had a wonderful full flavor and a nice heat that smacked ya up side the head and said “I”m here, enjoy me.”

The second time we made it with Franks hot sauce. It had a MUCH milder heat but a truly amazing flavor. My son-in-law who grew up just outside of Buffalo got a little smile on his face when I slipped him a taste straight from the pot and quickly gave it a nod of approval. Though in discussions with him and my son we all agreed it needed more heat.

So my advice to you is if you want a GOOD heat go with the Tabasco, if you’re looking for a milder sauce go with franks, BOTH will give you a great flavor profile.

What you will need:

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Recipe makes enough for sauce for 4-6 full  chicken breast shredded

  • 2-6 chicken breast, washed, trimmed and dryed (I prefer bone in with skin)
  • 2-4 tablespoons of vegetable oil for oiling the chicken and grill before cooking
  • Salt and Pepper
  • 2/3 cup hot pepper sauce
  • 1/2 cup cold unsalted butter
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons white vinegar
  • 1/4 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper 
  • 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder

How we did it:

Begin as usual by washing and trimming any lose or tough parts off your chicken breast. If you’re using bone in, trim the ribs off too and discard. With that done, place your chicken in the the fridge, and CLEAN EVERYTHING that the chicken may of came in contact with. We prefer a tablespoon bleach to a quart of water mix in a spray bottle. A couple of caps of bleach in the dishwater doesn’t hurt either.

While your chicken is drying and resting in the fridge, set your grill up for INDIRECT grilling or fire up your smoker.

Once your coals are up to temperature, add wood chunks of your choice, oil your grates as well as  your chicken.

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Now place your breast (chicken) on the grates, give ’em a little salt and pepper then settle in for a nice little smoke.

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We ran the UDS at about 300f and it took us about 1/2 an hour to hit the magic mark of 165f internal on the chicken breast. If you’re using a grill you may want to check their temperature after about 20 minutes. If you don’t have a meat thermometer cook until the juices run clear.

Once they hit 165 and the juices run clear remove them from the grill.

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While the chicken rest, begin making your sauce.

Combine the hot sauce, butter, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, cayenne pepper, garlic powder, and salt in a pot and place over medium heat. Bring to a simmer while stirring with a whisk. As soon as the liquid begins to bubble on the sides of the pot, remove from heat, stir with the whisk, and set aside for use.

Now shred your chicken, and add your sauce. The sauce will separate so give it one final stirring before pouring over your chicken.

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All that’s left to do now is enjoy, add a little coleslaw on the side, to temper the heat from the sandwich, maybe a a little blue cheese crumbled on top, and your favorite beverage and you’re set for game day.

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So go ahead and whip these babies up in your favorite teams Talegate Town, make a few extras for the poor guys stuck at parties serving hot dogs and hamburgers.

 
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Posted by on September 2, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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