This week we hope to catch as many bowl games as possible. As we do, we like to enjoy some of our favorite comfort foods from our Southern Roots: Beer and Cheese Chicken and Biscuits. This is basically chicken and broccoli in a beer and cheese sauce, with a side of beer, and another side of beer biscuits. My mother cooked me this meal growing up and I bust it out every once in a while when I know those around me won’t be offended by fake cheese and cheap beer. Just trust me, this recipe is so tasty. It’s the perfect pairing to any game you might be planning to watch.
This dish’s fancy name is Chicken Mornay. This dish was actually served in the Neiman Marcus deapartment store cafe, which my mother used to frequent. My mom snagged the recipe from the Neiman Marcus Cookbook years ago and has been making it ever since. I can still remember the smells of the beer biscuits filling the house as a child.
A proper lady from the South, my mom is also a football fanatic. She knows the stats and players better than most men. I love this about her! It was especially fun to get to make this meal with her over New Years and watch football games all afternoon. She and my dad would be yelling at the TV while Josh and I sat back and enjoyed our beers.
You see, even though my mom cooks with beer, she would never been seen holding one. Even when we grew up she would drive all the way out to the liquor store (we lived in a dry county) in preparation for this meal, and buy one single can of the cheapest beer at our drive-thru liquor store. She used half to make the chicken recipe and the other half for the biscuits; I never saw her take a sip.
As for me, I actually enjoy the taste of beer. Maybe it’s because the flavor reminds me of the aromas of beer biscuits cooking in the oven and the taste of this rich cheese sauce. And when you are sipping a beer and thinking of biscuits, what’s not to like?!
It is a simple recipe, with simple southern ingredients, but like our Chess Pie recipe, sometimes the most basic meals are those that are the most comforting.
What games will you be watching this week? What do you like to cook to enjoy during a football game? I would love to hear!
My mama's recipe for Chicken Mornay.
8ouncesVelveeta cheese,cut into small pieces
1mediumjalapeno,diced (optional for a more spicy sauce)
Mix biscuit ingredients together to let rise, while the chicken is cooking.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Cut the chicken into bite sized pieces the season with salt and pepper. Place the uncooked chicken in a baking dish with a few drizzles of olive oil. Bake for about 15-20 minutes or until cooked all the way through (check by cutting a piece in half to see if it is still pink). (You can grill or cook the chicken however you would like but this is how I have done it)
While the chicken is cooking steam the broccoli.
For the sauce, melt the butter over medium heat. Add flour and whisk until all of the butter is absorbed (about 30 seconds). Add milk gradually and whisk it all together quickly so the flour dissolves. Slice the cheese into small chunks then add to the sauce. Add the jalapeno and beer and continue to stir until the beer is completely incorporated.
Remove the chicken from the oven. Layer the broccoli on top then pour the cheese sauce over it all. Cook at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes or until cheese is bubbly.
For the biscuits:
Ingredients: 3 cups biscquick, 3 tablespoons sugar, 1 cup beer
Mix ingredients together. Grease muffin pan and distribute batter into pan. Let rise for 30-40 minutes. Bake at 375 for about 20 minutes, or until golden brown on top.My favorite way to enjoy this dish is to cut a biscuit in half then put the chicken and broccoli on top, with a generous spoonful of the cheesy sauce drowning the biscuit!